Stop now »« Offline for a bit

That’s not a “response”, Michael, it’s a “denial”

Ophelia Benson called out Michael Shermer for a sexist remark he made. Now Michael Shermer responds. Well, actually, he jinks and jitters to avoid the issue, and tries a grand distraction: “Hey, look over there! It’s tribalism!”

Here’s what Shermer was caught saying in a video discussion about why women aren’t participating as much in the skeptical movement:

It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.

You know what? That is a great big hairy naked sexist remark. It’s a plain assumption that men are intrinsically better suited to leading skepticism and atheism. You can’t get much plainer than “It’s more of a guy thing.”

A good response would have been to admit that he’d made an unthinking, stupid remark and that he’d like to retract it. But that’s not what he does. Instead, he argues that he really does think the split in participation is 50/50, and points to TAM as having roughly equal numbers of men and women speaking.

Need I point out that the reason gender ratios have been improving is because people like Ophelia and Rebecca Watson and Greta Christina and Jen McCreight have been pointing out the discrimination for years, and have provided lists of excellent women and minority speakers, and conference organizers, rather than doubling down and denying the problem, have been receptive and made strong efforts to correct the bias?

Oh. So I guess it’s not a guy thing, and you were wrong, Michael. It might have been cleverer of you to just say, “I was wrong, I made a sexist remark, the evidence shows that it’s not a guy thing.” A column in which he recognized his own sexism and talked about conscious efforts to improve would have been a good and respectful step forward.

But no. Instead he goes shopping for quotes from friends to show that he was right. He asked Cara Santa Maria about this issue, and she says it’s harder to find women willing to get in front of a camera on these issues, and that women atheists are often singled out as particularly brave.

Why is that, I wonder? That’s an interesting observation. Why doesn’t Shermer follow through on that? Because it seems to me that that’s an important fact: it is harder for women to come out, to be prominent in atheist and skeptical circles. We could split the possibilities into two broad categories: it’s the fault of the women — skepticism just isn’t a gal thing — or we could lay the problem on the environment of the skeptical movement. Shermer is just going to take the lazy option of blaming the women, because the alternative would require hard work by leaders of the skeptical movement to address.

And then he brings in Harriet Hall, who also makes a sexist remark.

I think it is unreasonable to expect that equal numbers of men and women will be attracted to every sphere of human endeavor. Science has shown that real differences exist. We should level the playing field and ensure there are no preventable obstacles, then let the chips fall where they may.

So sex differences are real, and we should just pretend that we don’t see sex and gender everywhere we look? This sounds so much like the argument common among clueless white people that they don’t see color. Yeah, you do. Every one of us has preconceptions about people made on the basis of sex and race. You don’t progress by pretending that stereotypes and perception don’t shape how we judge people.

Hall should know this. We see it in science, too, where women and men have initially equivalent interest in following the field, and then women are actively discouraged from pursuing the higher ranks of their discipline. We know this; there are many studies demonstrating a sex bias in refereeing papers, in promotion and tenure, in cultural attitudes about competence. You don’t overcome those by just telling everyone there is no barrier to women and men applying for the jobs in equal numbers.

By the way, I hate the phrase “Science has shown” followed by some irrelevant fact. Science has shown that men and women have differences, true: women have vulvas and breasts, men have penises and hairier bodies. Science has not shown that women have significantly different cognitive abilities. Lady brains do not lack a skeptical module that gentlemen brains have.

And that’s really the big problem here. There is no reason anywhere to think that women have less capacity for critical thinking, or that they are intrinsically more gullible and therefore more likely to be religious, or that they are less rational and so less suited to careers in science. Shermer is talking about the skeptical movement, a pursuit dedicated to fostering greater critical thinking. Why would you argue that women have less capacity or less to gain from that? Because that’s what they’re doing, pinning the blame for less participation on the women themselves.

Oh, man, then Shermer obliviously steps right into the race issue.

Benson makes a strong case that something other than misogyny may be at work here, when she asks rhetorically if I would make the same argument about race. I would, yes, because I do not believe that the fact that the secular community does not contain the precise percentage of blacks, Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans as in the general population, means that all of us in the secular community are racists, explicitly or implicitly. A variance from perfect demographic symmetry does not necessarily correspond to racist attitudes. It just means that the world is not perfectly divided up according to population demographics, and people have different interests and causes. There is nothing inherently bigoted, racist, or misogynistic in the fact that the demographics of the secular community do not reflect those of the general population (in gender, in age and socio-economic class, or in height, weight, or any number of other variables for that matter), so short of some other evidence of bigotry, racism, and misogyny, there is no need to go in search of demons to exorcise.

Errm, yes, actually, it does mean that. Secularism itself shouldn’t be an issue for just us white folks; it’s a universal concern. The grand issues that we put front and center in our various movements — atheism, skepticism, science — really are concerns for every human being. It’s all the associated baggage that we drag in that makes us implicitly racist — we talk about White Men’s Problems all the time, we always, as white people, address the grander topics of skepticism and atheism from the narrower perspective of our particular cultural biases.

White men aren’t really all that concerned about our male children having a very high likelihood of being thrown in prison for minor drug offenses; we middle class white folk are not so concerned about economic disparities as the poor people who can’t afford to attend a conference; male organizers aren’t as aware of the problems of finding child care as women, who are saddled with most of the child-rearing obligations, are. These are implicit biases in our views. This is racism, classism, sexism.

Seriously, every one of us is racist as fuck. We can’t help it.

But denying it makes it worse. And being conscious of our biases and giving other voices a chance to speak is how we make it better.

For years, I’ve been saying that the way to make conferences and the movement as a whole less biased towards male concerns is to ask women what matters to them, and to listen and respond, rather than telling the little ladies what they need to hear. It’s the same with race. If you’re white, you’re racist, and you’ve typically got little appreciation of the experience of being black; so instead of saying, “I’m not racist, how would you like to speak on our panel about Bigfoot hunting and UFOs?” you just ask black people what’s important to them, what they’d like to talk about, what are skeptical/atheist issues of concern in their community?

Shrugging your shoulders and saying that there is nothing wrong with our values being different than those of the black community, or the Hispanic community, or those of women is an open admission that you aren’t working under the banner of Secularism, but under the banner of White Man’s Secularism. You are making an implicitly sexist/racist remark when you blandly insist that what ought to be a truly catholic movement to improve humanity is just fine if it somehow fails to engage the concerns of non-white non-male people as much as it does us.

I could go on at length about Shermer’s other complaint: that the “invectosphere” called him names. He doesn’t get to complain about that at all with respect to Ophelia, who has been under a ferocious invective assault for the last few years; that he complains about being called a “jackass” is pathetic and feeble when you compare it to the non-stop abuse Ophelia, Jen, Greta, Rebecca, and just about every woman participant in this argument gets flooded with online. And he especially doesn’t get to complain because right now his comment section is full of the very same people who obsess over these women and who spew the most disgusting sexist insults at them…and they now see him as a fellow hero fighting against feminst tribalism.

Comments

  1. ezekiel says

    pearl clutching? tone trolling? all about me? check my ego? dood tears?

    Trust me, I’m caught between laughing out loud and shaking my head in disbelief.

    For a group that prides itself on “freethought”, you sure are testy when someone has a thought you don’t like.

  2. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    And you’ve been reading for 5 years, eh? Liar, liar, all flagrante. Gee, however did you miss the recent post “Douche defends douching”? In this community, douchebag and all variants are considered to be perfectly acceptable insults.

    I don’t want to overlook that there are a few respected commenters who do find it sexist, but yeah, “douche is a feminist insult” is the generally held view.

    Look, evidence! http://preview.tinyurl.com/bv2qlfj

  3. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    For a group that prides itself on “freethought”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freethought

    you sure are testy when someone has a thought you don’t like.

    So the fuck what? Who said freethought — ahem, seriously, look at the wikipedia link above — or freedom of thought (like you meant to say) is supposed to mean people don’t receive angry criticism for their stupid ideas?

    Idiot.

  4. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    For a group that prides itself on “freethought”, you sure are testy when someone has a thought you don’t like.

    You are confabulating true freethought with freedom from criticism. This is typical of those who come with opinions they can’t back with evidence. You need to stop using freethought in this manner. It shows your ignorance and potentially defines you as a troll.

  5. Utakata says

    “Trust me, I’m caught between laughing out loud and shaking my head in disbelief.”

    …so you admit to trolling then, since you aren’t taking anything you said or what others said seriously. This is all a big joke to you. Thus you are raising discourse to get you rocks off without even showing clue or care to what’s going on. This is good to know…

    …assuming you don’t have any connection to the Slyme, I’ll see you in the Dungeon section than. Nice to have met you.

  6. kate_waters says

    @thepint #495

    It’s a contabulous fabtraption that runs on the tears on pain of poor, oppressed white guys. Enthroned in it’s Misandric Majesty I spread derision and ridicule for the oppression of the beleaguered Straight, White, Cis, Heteronormative d00dz.

    You can build your own. I made mine out of tinfoil, pipe cleaners and a big ol’ pile of misogynistic ramblings that I’ve collected over the years.

    They get REALLY crappy mileage, but that’s okay because you’ll have an almost endless supply of fuel.

  7. says

    “Trust me, I’m caught between laughing out loud and shaking my head in disbelief.”

    The refuge of idiots everywhere. Cupcake, don’t bore us, that’s downright criminal.

  8. kate_waters says

    @thepint

    You can have it in any colour your fluffy little pink feminist heart desires.

    …wait… it’s our brains that are fluffy and pink, right? My bad.

  9. thepint says

    @ kate_waters – Speak for yourself. Mine’s as purple as a proper batch of ube ice cream and SPARKLY AS HELL!

  10. kate_waters says

    @ezekiel

    If you think your opinion of my super-fun-lady-time activities is of any concern to me you’ve got problems that run much deeper than being a frequent sale item at the Posterior Haberdasher.

    In case you can’t figure it out, I called you a cheap asshat.

    Wait, can I use asshat?

  11. bishoptakesknight says

    @Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts

    http://youtu.be/_UJlNRODZHA

    “privilege: the power to define reality for everybody, and expect your definition to stick.” _Tim Wise

    The quoted section of my previous post is at the 36 minute mark. Sorry it took so long to find.

  12. ezekiel says

    No, my first post was sincere.

    From the outside, this pointless bickering is ridiculous and doesn’t serve any purpose other than to give well-established members a free rein to shout down anyone with a difference of opinion.

    Go ahead and re-read my original post (#421). I am talking about both parties here – FTB and the Slyme Pit (of which I am not a member, and I only rarely post on FTB using my WordPress login)

    I’m what you might call an “independent” atheist. I do my thing on twitter, I have my own opinions and I have my own blog with a handful of occasional readers. I’ve started to become more vocal and active in my community too and I hope to start up a local atheist group in the new year.

    My “concern trolling” could very well be exactly that – concern.

    These types of blog posts don’t achieve much of anything – other than to alienate people and make you look bad. Yes, my original post was inflammatory, and it was done so deliberately, because I am honestly sick to death of the civil war between FTB and the SlymePit.

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation* then you need to straighten your shit out and realize *why* FTB is so derided by many, many people. Here’s a clue – it’s not because there’s something wrong with everyone else

    This whole post and subsequent comments are nothing more than flame bait, trolling and attention whoring. And just like a moth to a flame, I was drawn right in and kept it going.

    So I shall bow out graciously, go back to twitter and my local community and ignore the lot of you for another few months, until the next round of ridiculous quote-mining and misogyny-baiting lands on my radar, and angers me to the point of actually leaving a comment on one of these dreadful blogs.

  13. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation*

    Gee, freedom to speak means freedom to be criticized. You seem to have trouble with that concept.

    and angers me to the point of actually leaving a comment on one of these dreadful blogs.

    Here’s some advice cupcake, if hate the blogs so much don’t ever read or post on them. Otherwise, shut the fuck as a hypocrite.

  14. Gnumann+, nothing gnu under the sun (but the name sticks) says

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation* then you need to straighten your shit out and realize *why* FTB is so derided by many, many people. Here’s a clue – it’s not because there’s something wrong with everyone else…

    So, you’re totally unable to read the OP. Or any other post on the matter. Yet still you feel the need to give us your opinion on something that hasn’t actually happened.

    Why is that?

  15. Rey Fox says

    Because I have work that I’m avoiding, I took the liberty of rounding up every reply I could find with a couple of ctrl-f’s to marcantony’s original post:

    Ze Madmax:
    Then by all means, go forth and go about it the right way. I’m sure your astounding success will put “both sides” to shame one day.

    Tony:
    And you’re totes the guy to tell us how to do it the right way?
    Instructing us soon, you will be?

    (I’ll add that there’s more than one way to argue a point. Different approaches work with different people.)

    sharkjack (responding to tony):
    He said bye, which means one of two things. He’s either going to be gone (unlikely but it’s possible I guess), or he’s going to keep coming back, remark how what you guys are saying to him is not productive and helpful and stuff, claim to leave again and keep going in an endless loop until he gets banned or confined or both.

    Tethys:
    An ardent feminist would not use the term cat fighting.

    Matt Penfold:
    The south of where ? The south of England, the south of Wales, the South of France, the south of Germany, the south of Spain ….

    The fact you think the telling us you were born in the south means anything unless you also say the south of where says a lot about how much you think about things,

    That? THAT is what made you throw a tantrum and take your ball and go home? Jeez. Weak.

    Bonus comment from sharkjack:

    I have near perfect confidence he won’t answer your question. All it takes to prove me wrong is a single post to answer a single question. Will Marcantoni be up to the challenge?

    The answer is no. Surprising, I know.

  16. Anthony K says

    No, my first post was sincere.

    Yes, my original post was inflammatory, and it was done so deliberately

    This is why people hate rubberneckers.

    Keep your eyes on your own piece of the road, idiot.

  17. Krasnaya Koshka says

    ezekiel @ 421 –

    Mysogynists are the new boogie-man – you could be living next-door to a potential rapist! It’s garbage, absolute garbage and it is doing nothing for the atheist/secular community as a whole.

    New? Perhaps new to you. You must be a man. Misogynists have not been new nor are they boogeymen. They exist. And rapists exist. Perhaps they’re new to you, but I was first shown them in 1976, when I was 11.

    Anecdote: I was swimming at Big Surf, a man-made waterpark with wave machine in Scottsdale, AZ, with my friends when I was pulled under the water by hairy arms (I’ll never forget that bit). He was behind me and I never saw him and he rubbed my vulva roughly while I thought I might drown. It seemed an eternity to me and I could never fathom what it was that was so interesting to him between my legs. Finally! Wave was over and he let me go.

    Gasping after the break of the wave, I looked around for who this molester could possibly be. And it could’ve been anyone (with hairy arms, of course). I was so disgusted I promptly vomited, made my mom take me immediately home and then I couldn’t leave my house for a week.

    I never told anyone about that, until now. But the “potential rapist” is a real thing, even if it is only (ONLY! ha!) a potential molester. You don’t know which guy is going to be that one so women have to take precautions, as the world stands now — fucked up.

    As has been said repeatedly and vehemently here, it’s your sort of minimizing of the problem that allows it to go on. Garbage? Because it doesn’t affect you, I’m guessing.

    The whole thing is as ridiculous as the Fox News “War on Terror”.

    Ridiculous because you’ve never had to think about it. Can you at least recognize that? That maybe women who’ve gone through similar things (along with shaming, patronizing, minimalizing their whole lives) might be absolutely fed up with yet another dude coming along and telling them that they can’t even now participate in an “enlightened” forum because they’re causing “deep rifts”. Fuck that.

    Saying sexist (and racist, and ableist, and transphobic, and homophobic, etc.) shit is what’s causing the rifts, with doubling down causing chasms. It’s not the women who are speaking up about it.

  18. consciousness razor says

    From the outside, this pointless bickering is ridiculous and doesn’t serve any purpose other than to give well-established members a free rein to shout down anyone with a difference of opinion.

    What about from the inside? Are we supposed to interpret this as your ignorant opinion, or do you want to back any of that up with anything?

    Go ahead and re-read my original post (#421).

    Why? It was a load of crap the first time.

    I am talking about both parties here – FTB and the Slyme Pit (of which I am not a member, and I only rarely post on FTB using my WordPress login)

    I’m sure that would be a very compelling false equivalence, but #421 said nothing about the slimepit.

    I’m what you might call an “independent” atheist. I do my thing on twitter, I have my own opinions and I have my own blog with a handful of occasional readers.

    Why would I call you that? Am I supposed to think you’re a special snowflake?

    These types of blog posts don’t achieve much of anything – other than to alienate people and make you look bad.

    Again, are we clear that this is supposed to be your opinion (maybe about what it achieves for you), or is this supposed to be a fact which you haven’t supported with anything?

    Yes, my original post was inflammatory, and it was done so deliberately, because I am honestly sick to death of the civil war between FTB and the SlymePit.

    Who here do you think wants to deal with those fucking slimewads? Is this one of the things that makes you such a special fucking snowflake?

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation*

    And if it wasn’t just a poor choice of words because he doubled down on his idiocy, and even then we’re not doing anything remotely like “crucifying” him? What then?

  19. kate_waters says

    @Krasnaya Koshka

    I am so sorry that happened to you. I’m also very glad you spoke up and spoke out.

    The more we talk about our experiences the harder it will be for idiots to sweep these experiences “under the rug” as just “isolated incidents”.

    Thank you for being brave and adding your voice to the choir.

  20. kate_waters says

    …and thank you, Pharynguloids, for a fun, informative and generally d00d-bashing day.

    I’ve got to be up for work in just under four and a half hours, so I’m out of here. I can’t wait for tomorrow morning so I can read all the fun I’ll be missing while I’m at work!

  21. nms says

    The whole thing is as ridiculous as the Fox News “War on Terror”.

    Both the War on Terror and the War on Women are propaganda designed by media elites to distract from the one true Atheist™ cause…

    The War on Christmas.

  22. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    I don’t know why anyone was surprised that Tim Wise would say that. It’s a fine definition of privilege.

    Where bishoptakesknight is full of shit, of course, is in failing to notice that we don’t have that power. We don’t get to define reality. (Not yet, anyway.) Even in the face of our protests, patriarchy and white privilege continue to exist.

  23. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    ezekiel,

    other than to give well-established members a free rein to shout down anyone with a difference of opinion

    How exactly do you “shout down” anyone on the intertoobz? Do you mean threatening and harassing them and their family until they feel they have to take a break from blogging? Do you mean wondering aloud about raping them because they’re so annoying? Do you mean running an obsessive hate campaign against them for well over a year? Because all those things have happened, and they have all been perpetrated by those on one side of the “deep rift”.

    Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation*

    You really are either a dishonest little shit, or a total fuckwit – or of course, both. The word you needed there was “criticise”, not “crucify”; and as you’ve already been told more than once, Shermer is being criticised primarily for his doubling-down response to the initial objections to his remark.

    So I shall bow out graciously

    You didn’t. But do try and stick the flounce, hmm?

  24. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    we don’t have that power

    as feminists and antiracists.

    A man can refuse to be a feminist, and have his share of the power that comes with upholding the status quo. If he becomes a feminist, then he is swimming against the current, and does not have the same power in numbers.

  25. Krasnaya Koshka says

    kate_waters @ 520 -

    Thank you and exactly! It’s not some “boogie-man” paranoia. True, this did not happen to me whilst I was at some organized secular event but the vibe is all the same. The stench of our current culture permeates everything.

    Is it too much to ask that people refrain from using this demeaning language? Really? I have the utmost respect for many here who have been called out on their blind spots and have made a concerted effort to better themselves. And I have been called out many times in my life on horrible things I said unintentionally but still stupidly.

    Living is learning and growing. That’s the best part about it, I think.

  26. Utakata says

    @ezekiel

    An “independent atheist” does not make you a correct atheist. More like one that shirks peer review…thus prone to saying more bone headed things, which most of your ill-advised ranting and railing has been of.

    Sorry, but adding further “flame bait, trolling and attention whoring”, isn’t going to make it go away. As equally argueable, as this is not what is going on here. So you are essentially railing against a ficticious straw man, and pissing everyone else off while doing it. You’re not making many friends or sympathy….just an eventual banhammer if you keep it up.

    And finally, this is not just a “war” between FtB and the Slympit, although these two groups have been vocal adversaries, it’s an age old war about women’s rights. Whether they are to have their rights met or being ignored and/or harrassed is what is going on here. And it strongly appears that the skeptic/atheist community has a real issue with this. Perhaps a holdout from organized religion where males mostly dominated. And they don’t like to let that go, when and where there is no reason to hold on to it. Keep this in mind when you go shooting off on another rant on someone else’s blog next time over this. Just saying.

    …now, where was I. Oh yeah, /lurking.

  27. Ze Madmax says

    ezekiel @ 514

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation* then you need to straighten your shit out and realize *why* FTB is so derided by many, many people.

    Oooooooh. I see now. That makes more sense. My apologies for my previous reaction.

    I should’ve cussed a lot more. Do you REALLY think that bullshit is gonna fly here? Are you so fucking stupid that you don’t understand not only the difference between criticism and crucifixion (as noted above) but you also don’t realize that his observation is not an issue, but the fact that Shermer DOUBLED-DOWN, REFUSED TO ACKNOWLEDGED HE FUCKED UP AND WENT ON HIS MERRY WAY SPOUTING EVEN MORE SEXIST (AND RACIST!) BULLSHIT?

    Seriously. Either you are running for Biggest Dumbfuck of 2012, or you think everybody here is as stupid as you portray yourself to be. Also, for the nthillion time: read the fucking literature. Chilly climate/stereotype threat are REAL ISSUES that harm REAL PEOPLE.

    But apparently you’re either too stupid to realize this, or too much of an asshole to care. Either way, fuck off already.

  28. says

    Krasnaya Koshka, I am so sorry you are yet another person who had such an experience. It’s telling that the idiots never seem to figure out that a startling number of people have had similar experiences.

  29. Krasnaya Koshka says

    Ze Madmax and Caine, thank you!

    Caine, yeah, that was only the tip of the iceberg of the years soon to come but that was when my childhood crashed. I am very lucky, I know, to have made it happily to eleven.

  30. ezekiel says

    If clarifying a remark with another observation is “doubling down” on the misogyny, then you’re all fucking insane.

    “Benson makes a strong case that something other than misogyny may be at work here, when she asks rhetorically if I would make the same argument about race. I would, yes, because I do not believe that the fact that the secular community does not contain the precise percentage of blacks, Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans as in the general population, means that all of us in the secular community are racists, explicitly or implicitly. A variance from perfect demographic symmetry does not necessarily correspond to racist attitudes. It just means that the world is not perfectly divided up according to population demographics, and people have different interests and causes. There is nothing inherently bigoted, racist, or misogynistic in the fact that the demographics of the secular community do not reflect those of the general population (in gender, in age and socio-economic class, or in height, weight, or any number of other variables for that matter), so short of some other evidence of bigotry, racism, and misogyny, there is no need to go in search of demons to exorcise.”

    Perhaps Ireally am an ignorant fuckwit as many of you seem to believe, but I just cannot see how that explanation can be construed to mean that Shermer is clearly a misogynist and needs to be called to the carpet for it.

    Fucking scepticism, how does it work?

  31. Gnumann+, nothing gnu under the sun (but the name sticks) says

    Fucking scepticism, how does it work?

    It usually involves a fair bit of thinking.
    And good-faith efforts to understand others claims and the reasons for those.

    So it’s not for you obviously.

  32. ezekiel says

    It usually involves a fair bit of thinking.
    And good-faith efforts to understand others claims and the reasons for those.

    That you can say with a presumably straight face is quite remarkable.

  33. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    Fucking scepticism, how does it work? – ezekiel

    Well, at least you admit you haven’t the slightest idea. Shermer, of course, is strawmanning furiously in that quote: no-one would demand that the secular community reflect the “precise percentage” of demographic groups in the population; but the fact that that community is overwhelmingly white and heavily male should be a serious cause for concern, and for at least investigating whether there are things wrong within that community. As for “short of some evidence”, well, he (and you) could try actually listening to the concerns and complaints of members of those under-represented groups. Even apart from that, as far as misogyny is concerned, Jesus wept, where has the man been for the past year and a half?

    BTW, weren’t you going to “bow out graciously” a few minutes ago? If you can’t even tell the truth about what you’re going to do in the immediate future, why should anyone take anything you say seriously?

  34. Stacy says

    @ezekial

    I will say it again: Shermer may have used a poor choice of words, but if you’re going to crucify him as a misogynist for *making an observation*

    Say it as many times as you like, you’re just revealing your ignorance. Neither PZ nor Ophelia has called Shermer a misogynist.

    You’re a sloppy thinker delivering a pompous, self-righteous lecture based on a misapprehension of what was said in the OPs and a sense that you’re entitled to have your half-assed opinion taken seriously.

  35. Ze Madmax says

    Nick Gotts @ 537

    If you can’t even tell the truth about what you’re going to do in the immediate future, why should anyone take anything you say seriously?

    Because he’s a software engineer and an independent atheist, of course.

  36. Gnumann+, nothing gnu under the sun (but the name sticks) says

    That you can say with a presumably straight face is quite remarkable.

    My face is usually not very straight. The epitome of classical beauty isn’t me.

    Also, I tend to seek out these threads for my own enjoyment. And that aim is best served by the classical socratic method (ie – insulting one-liners).

    But for all my faults, I’m not the one who’s arguing from personal incredulity.

  37. says

    Nick:

    BTW, weren’t you going to “bow out graciously” a few minutes ago? If you can’t even tell the truth about what you’re going to do in the immediate future, why should anyone take anything you say seriously?

    Special Snowflakes are a lie.

  38. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    Ah well, got to be up for work in a little over 7 hours – I’m confident I leave the barbequeing of the concern troll in capable hands.

  39. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    but I just cannot see how that explanation can be construed to mean that Shermer is clearly a misogynist and needs to be called to the carpet for it.

    Fucking scepticism, how does it work?

    It means we don’t believe a word of a concern troll when they are apologizing for something that should have never been said. That’s how skepticism works here. Stick your flounce loser…

  40. says

    you merely referenced vague “articles” [plural sic.]

    plural, because “any article” doesn’t sound grammatically right. In hindsight, I should have said “no article” instead.

    c) it never even uses the word ‘libertarian’ once.

    irrelevant, since equity feminism is functionally libertarian feminism: it allows only the removal of inequitable laws, rejecting the notion that other forms exist and/or that other forms of inequality should be corrected.

    For your claim to be true-ish, all self-identified “equity feminists” would have to be libertarians.

    that’s stupid. an idea is libertarian not because all the people who hold it are libertarians (generally, it works the other way ’round: a person holding predominantly libertarian ideas is a libertarian), but because it’s an idea based around a libertarian understanding of equality.

    —–

    Nothing Michael Shermer said was sexist. What he said was a stereotype without discriminatory intent.

    fuck me, that’s dumb. gender-stereotypes are sexist almost by definition.

    I am neither racist nor sexist.

    unless you were raised by egalitarian wolves, this cannot be true.

    When you reply “What does this have to do with me? I have not caused you harm.” You are told you are part of the problem. This is the prod for apology.

    lol. no. no one gives a fuck if you’re sorry for being privileged. acknowledging it and maybe putting in some effort to fix that problem though…

    I am offended at the notion that I am sexist for behaving male

    what the fuck is “behaving male”?

    I appreciate that you believe this, but please know that you’re wrong.

    except for the part where we aren’t

    I wish you folks could see beyond skin color and gender long enough to see that every person is an individual with a unique life and experience.

    oh yeah. every person is a unique snowflake completely uninfluenced by their environment [/sarc]. The individual experience of people is still shaped by their social environment and the space within the matrix of oppression that they occupy. taking people as individuals cannot reasonably mean ignoring these social influences, unless you believe in souls or some other dualist magic, like Contra-causal Free Will

    I am simply the wrong kind of white boy to share the supposed privilege my stats “should” have guaranteed.

    darling, your lack of class privilege doesn’t make your race and gender (and other) privileges disappear. look up intersectionality sometime.

    Just don’t be surprised if your head explodes in the face of real sexism or racism.

    cute.

    If I say a person is black I have not said anything about their gender, economic class, religious affiliation, education level, or biases.

    that’s because those are intersecting axes of oppression. nonetheless, many of them are linked, and experiences along one axis of oppression does tend to have a certain set of similarities.

    I can see that some people look at groups as a whole machine of statistically indistinguishable cogs. I refuse to participate. If more people did the problem could be solved.

    yeah. pretending social structures don’t exist is totes going to solve problems with those structures. tedious.

    The only two groups that have ever held true power IMO are the wealthy, mostly men, and socially desirable women.

    *rolleyes*

    The desirable women on the other hand control everything from how men are supposed to dress to how many offspring he can have.

    why am I not at all surprised that the MRA rhetoric is coming out now. Poor poor menz, not being allowed to treat women as incubators anymore.

    This causes the next generation of poor men having even poorer children because we will sacrifice every dime and break our bodies to be desired by women.

    more stupid-ass MRA rhetoric. all that’s missing is the alpha-male beta-male lingo.

    Similarly saying something is “a guy thing.” is not sexist.

    unless the topic is scratching your balls, it’s almost guaranteed to be a sexist stereotype (and even the ball-scratching ignores the existence of women with balls)

    It places no value on the thing or people in question.

    doesn’t need to. perpetuating gender-stereotypes is still sexist, even under the “separate but equal” regime. though, in this instance you’re wrong anyway, since that thing that’s supposedly “a guy thing” is something that’s considered positive to want to participate in/be able to accomplish, so not being able to is a negative even when not explicitly described as such.

    His answer to that had nothing to do with female competence and everything to do with their willingness.

    brushing off systemic problems with “well, i guess they just don’t want to” is perpetuating the systemic problem, in this case sexism. d’uh.

    I truly believe all of these remarks are untrue of myself and most male skeptics I know.

    yeah. I’m sure most of thw white male skeptics you know are totes daily victims of stop-and-frisk, being stopped for “driving while white” and other problems PZ implied with the minor drug offenses comment. And the “middle class” one was obviously not addressed at poor people (though I’d be very surprised if all the skeptics you know are poor, even if you apparently grew up in a disadvantaged economic class)

    Mainly because drug laws are unfair to everyone

    but unfairer to some than others. but hey, apparently noting that reality is some sort of “racism” in your mind.

    1. Assert patriarchy, privilege, and inherited white power is true.

    we don’t need to assert it. almost all sociological evidence points to the existence of these hierarchies, and virtually none shows counter-examples

    2. Back it up with stats that purposefully ignore the other side of the argument.

    what “other side of the argument”? so far you’ve presented only denial of the problem

    3. Bash everyone who doesn’t fall in line.

    criticizing your shallow understanding and ignorance is not “bashing”; not even metaphorically.

    4. Claim victory on the grounds of superior morality.

    actually, we “claim victory” because theevidence is on our side. but of course, it’s also true that not pretending systemic social problems will go away if only you pretend hard enough that they don’t exist is more ethical than remaining wilfully ignorand and/or in denial

    there is certainly no conspiracy to keep those people from failing

    boring attempt at refutation borne from complete failure to understand how social systems perpetuate themselves is boring.

    I just didn’t agree with the assumption that starting out poor, white, and male was somehow going to be easier than starting off hispanic and middle class, or black and wealthy.

    fucking hilarious bit of comprehension failure, given that the article specifically adressess the money thing to refute this specific bit of fucking stupid.

    Being against feminism is not the same as against equality for women.

    yes it is. by definition.

    The problem is about wealth and power.

    your pet axis of oppression does not make the other axes disappear. sorry.
    ——-

    We are effectively completely different species

    Stupidest. Comment. of 2012.

    agreed.

    ——-

    Poorly worded perhaps, but he’s essentially just saying “More guys tend to do this”.

    bullfuckingshit. it’s saying more guys want to do this, and that that’s the reason for the disparity; it’s blatant stereotyping and denial of systemic problems.

    I don’t see the software engineering community tearing itself apart like this, even though it has long been a male-dominated industry.

    and because the software industry is less willing to face its problems, we’re supposed to ignore them, too?
    It should be noted though that this isn’t even true, it’s just that you’re not noticing the massive complaints women in IT/software/etc. are writing about.

    give it time, and hopefully the software engineering community will also be “tearing itself apart” to undo all the toxic structures that are all over it at the moment.

    I’m what you might call an “independent” atheist.

    is that like “independent” voter?

    Perhaps Ireally am an ignorant fuckwit as many of you seem to believe, but I just cannot see how that explanation can be construed to mean that Shermer is clearly a misogynist and needs to be called to the carpet for it.

    Fucking scepticism, how does it work?

    well for starters, it requires not making Arguments from Ignorance. That comment merely showed that a)Shermer doesn’t understand the underlying problem (systemic disadvantage) in both the context of sex and race; and b)he apparently feels it necessarry to completely strawman the opposing argument, since no one is demanding that skepticism exactly reflect US demographics.
    incidentally, no one said Shermer was a misogynist for making that comment, either. People are saying that the comment was sexist. are you capable of understanding the difference?

    ——

    I find it disturbing that so many people on a place called “freethoughtblogs” simply ATTACK when someone presents a view that does not gel with the majority here.

    well, I find it exhaustingly stupid that people think “freethought” means not ever being taken to task when stupid shit comes out of their mouth.

    you see, freethought means being allowed to say whatever the fuck you want, not being protected from equally verbal responses you don’t like. in fact, taking criticism is essential to freethought; otherwise it’s just newagey “let’s agree to disagree” bull.

    Shouldn’t MRA issues be feminist issues as well?

    why the fuck would feminists advocate against women’s bodily autonomy, against protection of children from abusive parents, againstprotections for domestic violence victims, etc.?
    FYI, feminists do actually care about the actual problems men face, most of which are tied up with patriarchal definitions of masculinity. the BS MRAs spout on the other hand is just harmful shit.

    Presenting ideas for discussion is not sexist.

    your defense of JAQing off is noted, understood for the complete red herring to the topic at hand that it is, and dismissed.

  41. says

    Nick @450

    there is no human behaviour unique to one sex

    Ok, so you went down the misrepresentation route Nick. Where exactly was I talking about unique behaviours and why do you say that is a requirement? If men are more aggressive than women, let us say (doesn’t matter whether you think they are or not), then this differential in aggression could be as a result of a whole number of potential things but NONE of those things mandate that aggression is a unique attribute of males, any more than it is in any other species we may care to discuss.

    Maybe it is because, as you say, I am not very bright? However, I am at least bright enough to see when someone is willfully misrepresenting what I wrote (and pulling off a version of the ‘determined for predisposed’ switcheroo).

    Caine @458

    or noelplum99/Jim’s absolute idiocy in that thread, arguing that douching isn’t sexist because military.

    If I had realised your brain jumbles discussions up in that way I would not have argued so vehemently in that thread. I would like to apologise, you simply come across as a little odious, i hadn’t realised you had cognitive issues.

    Nerd @465

    The MRA fuckwits never, ever, present evidence. Just snark and attitude.

    I quote this because it followed a comment you quoted where I was specifically mentioned. I just wanted to remind you that I do not regard myself as an MRA any more than I regard myself as a feminist (although inasmuch as feminism is about equal rights for women i support it, in the same way inasmuch as MRA’s are about equal right for men I support MRA’s – I just see a whole lot more baggage and hidden sexism in both camps). If you recall after I linked you a video where I was highly dismissive of MRA’s (in fact, probably a bit OTT) which you refused to watch on account of being scared to go to YouTube (or something equally silly) your fellow regular here Rodney Nelson watched the video and informed you of this fact.

    So please, just refer to me as a ‘fuckwit’ in future and not an ‘MRA fuckwit’

    Jim

  42. says

    So please, just refer to me as a ‘fuckwit’ in future and not an ‘MRA fuckwit’

    Personally I don’t think getting called either of those would be as insulting as getting called “noelplum99″.

  43. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    So please, just refer to me as a ‘fuckwit’ in future and not an ‘MRA fuckwit’

    Who here gives a shit what you think loser. We will call them as we see it. Get that? You can always fade into the bandwidth if you don’t like the response to your insipid insipidity.

  44. says

    @546 Myeck Waters
    @547 Nerd

    PZ must be so proud of you both. It has taken him years to build up his blog and reputation to get regulars of the quality of you two.

    Jim

  45. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    PZ must be so proud of you both. It has taken him years to build up his blog and reputation to get regulars of the quality of you two.

    In other words, people who call it as they see it, not as you want to be seen. Typical loser post. Try again when you have something other than your fuckwitted OPINION.

  46. says

    ahmetduran:

    How can it be sexist if what he said is true?

    It is not true. Now, you’ve already made your sexist and incorrect views known, so here’s a suggestion: before typing more bullshit, go to the first page of this thread (click on the << Previous 1 link right above 'Leave a Reply') and keep quiet until you have read every single comment. After that, continue to stay quiet and try very, very hard to think.

  47. says

    So nice of Orac to stan for HH and lecture us silly wimmenz about. how speshul she is. Cos, y’know, we girls don’t read sciencey blogs, so we just assumed she was a hairdresser or professional puppy-cuddler like the rest of us, teehee!

    I want to be a part-time professional puppy-cuddler. It works well with writing. Hm…come to think of it, I kind of am already. :)

    ***

    Is there really a problem if dicing society one way or another shows one group to be more interested (for whatever reason, I am not claiming innate interests here [hah!]) in something than another? Is it really the ‘fault’ of young people that they are underrepresented each year at the Chelsea Flower Show – or is it just that young people give less of a fuck about gardening?

    First, this is reversed: The argument here isn’t that it’s the fault of women or black people that they’re underrepresented in the movement.

    Second, let’s say you’re leaders of a gardening movement (and let’s assume this is a broad movement with potential political relevance)… You can assume young people just don’t give a fuck about gardening, or you can look at the aspects of gardening that have excited people the world over: urban gardening, the science and technology of organic gardening, gardening in schools and its use in education, gardening and evolution, farmers markets and CSA, gardening and cooking, gardening and ethnic traditions,,.. Or you can just assume that horticulture is rich people and their flower shows, chalk your decline up to “young people these days,” and watch your numbers shrink and gardening be reduced to a hobby of the privileged few. It won’t be gardening’s problem, because the next generations will form their own groups, but you’ll be, and deserve to be, left behind.

  48. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Ahmetduran,
    Not only is it not true, it is so bad it’s not even wrong. When we attempt to compare two groups–e.g. men and women–in some quality, we are really attempting to compare two distributions. For this to be a valid comparison, we have to be able to define the quality in a simple fashion. A quality such as “leadership” is not simple, so the distributions we are trying to compare are actually multivariate at least, if they can be defined meaningfully at all. Moreover, the distributions will likely be broad for both sexes, with standard deviations in most variables commensurate with the mean. To try to reduce such a situation to a simple statement such as “It’s a guy thing…” is less an explanation than it is a confession of innumeracy.

    Moreover, what if–for the sake of argument–the sexes are truly different in some important way? Does that give the skeptical community license to fail for 50% of humanity? Might not understanding why the movement has been resistant to attempts toward greater inclusion not yield true insight and thus make the movement better for men as well as women?

    That is the problem with simple answers to complex problems–they wind up serving as just-so stories that prevent you from developing true insight.

  49. says

    SC @553

    Thank you for being the first person to actually address what i wrote and not either misrepresent what i said or simply attack me.

    You make a fair point and I accept it. What i would say is this is the difference between saying that someone or something is ‘to blame’ – as PZ has done here – and taking a candid look at where the land lies and working out where your movement or organisation has maximum room for growth.

    I certainly think that some work needs to be done to encourage women to get involved more. Like I said from the start, on YT 90% of atheist viewers are male, whereas out in the population at large (in the UK at least) 45% of those who declare ‘no religion’ are female, so certainly a good case can be made that there is growth potential there. What I am wary of, however, is targets and quotas because once you go down that line you are assuming things which it is unreasonable to assume and liable to manufacture outcomes which no longer about overcoming prejudices and preconceptions but simply about achieving arbitrary targets.
    I really don’t know why 9/10 atheists on YT would be male if the only reason that women are underrepresented is because of discrimination when, as i say, YT viewers are anonymous (and actually, aside from discussing hot topic gender issues, female YT Vloggers actually do very very well in the atheism sphere) . Hence, my suspicion is that whilst discrimination and preconception do dissuade women from taking part in atheist conventions and the like i also feel there are other factors in play that lie beyond the scope of event organisers, which is why i see a 50:50 target as wholly unrepresentative (though, clearly, this is a view which marks me as a figure to be hated on these blogs)

    Jim

  50. Anthony K says

    Noelplum99, I believe you’re sincere in wanting better discourse. And I believe you’re sincere in having ideas on how to improve it.

    So, for a change, rather than excoriating the regulars, why don’t you deal with ahmetduran’s question:
    “How can it be sexist if what he said is true ?”

    Show us how you’d deal with that.

  51. says

    SC @553

    Thank you for being the first person to actually address what i wrote and not either misrepresent what i said or simply attack me.

    Take your unctuous blather elsewhere.

    You make a fair point and I accept it.

    Well you claim to accept it, but don’t follow through on the implications.

    What i would say is this is the difference between saying that someone or something is ‘to blame’ – as PZ has done here – and taking a candid look at where the land lies and working out where your movement or organisation has maximum room for growth.

    What you did do is present a strange, reversed analogy. We’ve made it quite clear for years that the solution (to the underrepresentation of women specifically) lies in not assuming this reflects natural interests or capabilities, but acknowledging the unconscious (and conscious) requests to men to speak and engaging in outreach to women speakers, addressing harassment, dealing with issues of childcare, not promoting and indeed condemning sexist and misogynistic views, asking about and featuring the issues that are important to women, and…I’m sure I’m forgetting some.

    I certainly think that some work needs to be done to encourage women to get involved more.

    Indeed.

    Like I said from the start, on YT 90% of atheist viewers are male,

    Actually, I think you said that was true of 90% of your viewers and that you believed it to be true of the viewers of some unnamed women atheist YTers. Since the viewers are anonymous, as you’ve said, I’m curious as to how you could have such precise knowledge of your own viewers, much less others’.

    But even assuming for the sake of argument that that’s correct, has it occurred to you that a) people are less likely to view videos when they don’t want to comment (and this can come at a cost), b) the medium generally might rightly be perceived by women as hostile, and c) YT is but one small slice of the movement, and quite possibly not representative of women’s interests?*

    I would be at all surprised, after reading your comments on various blogs, if your viewership was overwhelmingly male. You should consider the many reasons for that, including the content of your statements.

    *It’s bizarre to me that after years of women explicitly saying that they want to be more involved their underrepresentation could be claimed to be due to a lack of interest.

  52. slow17motion says

    Ah, Jim! Don’t encourage, ‘em!

    Do we really want a bunch of women at our atheist conventions? Don’t you think they will be leaving a huge pile of dirty dishes at home? Besides, I’m not sure how they’ll contribute, what with their big soupy boobs getting in the way of everything.

    Who really needs a bunch of hens clucking about the patriarchy? Their mouths could be put to better use fellating their dorky, atheist, dragonmaster boyfriends. Just imagine how incredibly stinky some of these women will be, what with their rebellion against douching made evident on a previous thread. How distracting will it be, smelling like the Jersey shore through their jeans…

    Well, that was fun, but onto more serious stuff:

    First of all, I find it utterly hilarious that kate_waters didn’t take a second to think about where the word “butthurt” came from–as she rapidly apologized for what should have been an obviously homophobic expression. However, what is even more funny is how ‘butthurt’ so many people got after she said it! Learn to take a joke. ‘Butthurt’, ‘douche’, whatever the insult may be–I think many of you need to learn to let it go. Take a fuckin’ joke.

    Furthermore, how disadvantaged are gays in my society (I live in the US)? I came out my junior year of high school. I’ve been called a faggot, despite my ‘passing’ for a heterosexual (I’m not flaming like some gays, though I do have and eyebrow piercing and bleached hair–ehm, not that all people with bleached hair are gay–sorry Jim). I’ve dealt with the country bumpkins in upstate NY, what with their ATV’s decorated with their confederate flags (NY was in the union, jackasses). Did any of that stop me from going to college, getting a job, speaking my mind, owning a house, etc? Ehm, no.

    The only REAL disadvantage I have is that my marriage (should I get married) would not be recognized on a federal level (gay marriage in NY state, woohoo!).

    Everybody grows up with advantages and disadvantages, whether they’re black, gay, a woman, an atheist, a vegetarian–whatever… And, hey, it’s great to point out social injustices! But I also must point out how little relevance they typically play in the lives of many of the people posting on this board. Sure, there are countries where this stuff still counts, but if you’re posting from a country like England or America, for the love of god (<–only an expression, I'm still an atheist), get over yourself.

    It IS so important that we continue to struggle toward equality, but the way we do that is not to become hypersensitive and censor our fucking JOKES because, oops, we might offend somebody! We actually need to LISTEN to each other's ideas and have rational conversations.

    Jim/noelplum99 seems like a rational guy to me. All of the morons on here who want to vilify him seem to me to be rather irrational in their misrepresentations of his arguments and their name-calling.

    And Jim, the reason their are less female atheist viewers on youtube is probably because they're too busy organizing bake sales or something. Youtube, it's more of a guy thing.

  53. says

    Anthony @556

    I don’t know if I understand what Ahmetduran was referring to. I will assume it was Shermers comment of it being ‘a guy thing’, soory if I am barking up the wrong tree.

    This won’t alter anyone’s perception of me i am afraid. The only way i find to really try and get to the heart of it is to reverse it and then see how i’d feel about it. The thing is, i would acceot the comment and not even give it a second thought. my wife is in to scrap-booking and I am in to home brew – they are typical ‘man things’ and ‘woman things’: i have never met a single guy who scrap books or a single woman who brews her own beer. To be sure, this may well be as a result of cultural factors entirely (after all, go back a few hundred years and women brewed in the home just as they cooked) but that doesn’t make the statement any the less true.

    Of course, i suppose it depends crucially on whether you view Shermer’s statement as descriptive or normative. clearly, i viewed it as descriptive; if you viewed his statement as normative (that it is right and proper that scepticism is a guy thing) then it is clearly sexist. Maybe this gets to the heart of the issue and explains the disagreement?

  54. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Maybe this gets to the heart of the issue and explains the disagreement?

    Whatever you claim is wrong. End of story. Try again with a functioning brain, which allows for the fact you are wrong…

  55. ezekiel says

    Whatever you claim is wrong. End of story. Try again with a functioning brain, which allows for the fact you are wrong…

    Well shit, I’m convinced.

    You win the discussion. Congratulations.

  56. slow17motion says

    Wow, Nerd of Readhead–blah blah blah (fuck, that’s an obnoxious handle)… That’s quite the response. Well thought out–seriously, kudos. You are bound to win all of your arguments with that sort of insightful post. I’m obviously envious of your ability to completely not address a single thing that is said in a post while simultaneously throwing in your worthless jab at a guy who is already being piled on here at FTB.

  57. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You win the discussion. Congratulations.

    And flounced troll shows its lack of integrity once again…Loser.

  58. ezekiel says

    And flounced troll shows its lack of integrity once again…Loser.

    Yeah, sorry about that.

    I was pulled back in by the staggering vortex of derp that you just posted.

  59. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    PZ, please put slow17motion into automoderation or something. It’s unreasonable to expect anyone to have a conversation with him when he’s using homophobic slurs. (Oh, to show how homophobic slurs don’t bother him. How nice for him.)

  60. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m obviously envious of your ability to completely not address a single thing that is said in a post while simultaneously throwing in your worthless jab at a guy who is already being piled on here at FTB.

    And the troll jim said what backed by evidence that can’t be dismissed per Christopher Hitchens quote “that which is asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence”. Which is what I did. Care to supply EVIDENCE to back up Jim’s fuckwitted claims?

  61. says

    In actuality I was saying that people should CONSIDER other arguments before dismissing them offhand as sexist or some other nonsense.

    actually, you only need to consider each argument once. not once-er-person. once total. after that, it’s perfectly fine not to bother anymore, unless additional information is provided.

    Who the fuck thinks that MOST MRAs want children to be exposed to abuse, want victims of domestic violence to remain unpunished, and wish to strip women of their ability to have autonomy over their bodies?

    I don’t know about “most MRAs”, but influential MRA organizations agitate for exactly those things

    Sounds to me like this version of an MRA is more of a boogieman created by someone outraged that a man might actually have some legitimate issues that need to be addressed.

    adorable. I’m quite aware that men have legitimate issues that need to be addressed, but MRAs so very rarely actually bother with these issues. as evidenced by your stupid-ass response regarding toxic masculinities. also, slurs are a bannable offense.

  62. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I was pulled back in by the staggering vortex of derp that you just posted.

    Mine was minor compared to your fuckwittery.

  63. says

    Sc @558

    Actually, I think you said that was true of 90% of your viewers and that you believed it to be true of the viewers of some unnamed women atheist YTers. Since the viewers are anonymous, as you’ve said, I’m curious as to how you could have such precise knowledge of your own viewers, much less others’.

    I have spoken with some of my fellow female YT’ers and i know their demographic breakdown is very similar to my own.
    You ask the very reasonable question as to how i know who my viewers are, the answer is google analytics.
    For every video, or for my entire channel i can tell you data as specific as how many minutes were watched by viewers in Finland over the last 30 days (6,747 if you were interested) or what percentage of German viewers were 35-44 over the same period (19.5%).
    Over the last month 88.9% of my viewers were male and 11.1% female. Interestingly amongst my two most viewed locations, in the USA 14.6% were female whereas only 4.6% were female in the UK. I could give you specific data for any particular video but the figures do not vary a great deal.

    I would be at all surprised, after reading your comments on various blogs, if your viewership was overwhelmingly male. You should consider the many reasons for that, including the content of your statements.

    then I must point out that prior to the formation of Atheism+ I had never made a single video on feminism alone in 4 years on Youtube, and out of around 200 videos only one video featured these kinds of issues at all. In fact almost every video i upload is about issues relating to religion, atheism, moral philosophy etc. So your implied point that it is my sexist videos that are turning away female viewers is simply untrue. Please, if you doubt what i am saying here go to this page https://www.youtube.com/user/noelplum99/videos?view=0 and click the ‘load more’ button at the bottom and look back through the videos (a few have been deleted over the years but they were on atheism) and then you won’t have to take my word for it.

    Jim.

  64. slow17motion says

    By the way, I’ve noticed a lot of FTB’ers out there have either described themselves as geeks or nerds in their profiles (on Twitter) or even right in their handles.

    First of all, trying to give yourself some sort of cred by claiming to be a nerd or a geek makes you neither. It just makes you an asshat. Real geeks are evidenced by their blu ray collections of Battlestar Galactica, their intimate knowledge of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and their obsession with some fictitious yet heavily detailed galaxy (Mass Effect, Star Wars, etc.). Real geeks prove that they’re geeks by putting their geekiness on display. Real geeks don’t call themselves geeks in their Twitter profiles, as their geekiness is self-evident. Most real geeks were geeks before being called a geek was considered cool–and real nerds would find the word ‘nerd’ to be insulting as it was a label constructed by other diminutive intellects.

    Just sayin’.

  65. jacklewis says

    @Ezekiel
    “I don’t know why this is so hard to understand, other than the fact that it makes for a good drama and 400+ comments…”
    It’s not hard at all, but anyone not blindly digesting the official party line would probably not bother staying around very long. A cursory look at the contents of most comments would make it clear that it’s pretty much pointless to argue anything with people not willing to ever change their minds about anything. It just never happens.
    What is left are self loathing bullies who hide behind a cause that nobody could argue against and then use the cause very cheaply as a thinly veiled pretext to bash to their little hearts contents.
    It’s a perfect setup, you like telling people to fuck off, shut the fuck up? Well you come here, wait for someone to state a non conforming view (maybe an actual skeptic…), call them a MRA and then throw all the juvenile insults you can at them. Off course you have to wonder about the mindset that makes this enjoyable in the first place, but it takes a village… I guess.

  66. slow17motion says

    Jadehawk

    Oh, no!!! I MIGHT BE BANNED!!! DEAR MOTHER OF GOD, NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

    Ehm, oh, wait, I don’t care.

    Actually, I think it would be quite humorous for a gay man to be banned for an ironic use of the word “faggot.”

    No, most credible MRAs do not concern themselves with the issues you stated, at least not how you stated them. Sure, MRAs don’t want men wrongfully convicted for crimes they didn’t commit (see the Duke lacrosse scandal). That does NOT mean they want domestic abuse victims to suffer more. That’s just being dishonest.

    People like Jim are constantly posting new points, coming up with more evidence–yet he’s dismissed because you think it’s okay that once you disagree with a person you can just dismiss them offhand? Okay…? And by dismiss, it doesn’t mean just “not bother with”–on here it means actively insult and construct strawmen to knock down because it’s just not worth your precious time to actually respond to a post.

    I got a laugh out of your “toxic masculinities” (masculinity wasn’t evil until people began pluralizing it) thing though. Honestly, despite me not being a hyper-masculine dude, I find nothing sexier than a big, sweaty, strong man acting all brutish and masculine. There’s nothing toxic about a big, bulky, masculine man sweating and straining and testing his muscles against other man–hold on, I have to open up another window.

  67. consciousness razor says

    noelplum99, I see that you’re still not saying anything to counter any of the bullshit from the misogynist assholes around. Take your pick of any of them. Say one thing. Spend the slightest amount of energy dealing with them, because your credibility at this point is minimal at best. Honestly, I’m not that generous though. It’s nonexistent, as far as I’m concerned.

    I would be at all surprised, after reading your comments on various blogs, if your viewership was overwhelmingly male. You should consider the many reasons for that, including the content of your statements.

    then I must point out that prior to the formation of Atheism+ I had never made a single video on feminism alone in 4 years on Youtube, and out of around 200 videos only one video featured these kinds of issues at all. In fact almost every video i upload is about issues relating to religion, atheism, moral philosophy etc.

    That describes the content of your videos, doesn’t it? The fact you so rarely address feminist issues would skew the results.

    So your implied point that it is my sexist videos that are turning away female viewers is simply untrue.

    Doesn’t follow: see above.

    And if they’re sexist videos, then I’m sure they turn some women away. Yet somehow you expect the opposite.

  68. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    People like Jim are constantly posting new points, coming up with more evidence

    Nope, OPINION =/= EVIDENCE, which is a link to the academic literature. Jim is devoid of links.

  69. slow17motion says

    Yes, PZ, please but me on automoderation for ironically using a homophobic slur in a completely non-offensive way. Please disregard all logic and sense of irony and moderate me for proposing opinions that don’t gel with the majority of this forums users. Please, PLEASE block or ban me for being a gay man unafraid of using a friggin’ word that I’ve been called in real life without any sense of irony behind it!

    As Gob might say: “Come on!”

  70. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    but anyone not blindly digesting the official party line would probably not bother staying around very long.

    A party line which requires citations to the academic literature, not just recitation of OPINION. Funny how MRA fuckwits are long on OPINION, but short in EVIDENCE and citations.

  71. says

    at least not how you stated them.

    yeah, that’s what I thought. IOW, they do, they just don’t like having it pointed out

    I got a laugh out of your “toxic masculinities”

    thanks for continuing to prove my point.

    Honestly, despite me not being a hyper-masculine dude, I find nothing sexier than a big, sweaty, strong man acting all brutish and masculine.

    amazingly enough, this is entirely irrelevant to the topic of toxic masculinities.

  72. ksolway says

    I operate a philosophy Youtube channel, and a philosophy forum. More than 95% of the subscribers are men. Of the less than 5% that are women, a significant proportion are male-to-female transsexuals, and so they are genetically male.

    This is normal across all philosophical and all the more serious rational areas of interest.

    To try to artificially manufacture interest is to make the same mistake that the communist states make when they try to dictate to the public what they should like.

    If you want to give women special attention to see if they might one day develop interest in philosophical or deeper matters, then you are free to do so, but don’t pretend there is genuine interest when there isn’t.

  73. says

    slow17motion @559

    not that all people with bleached hair are gay–sorry Jim

    An interesting anecdote related to that. i went to barcelona with the guys from work a few years ago and dyed my hair ‘cosmic blue’. I popped round to see my folks and my dad asked me why i had dyed my hair, i told him for the trip and he said ‘Is that so you don’t look gay whilst you are over there?’ which had me breaking up with laughter at the fact that i have had my hair bleached for about 15 years and he must have been thinking it all that time and never said anything.
    When I got home I rebleached it and informed him I had ‘re-gayed my hair’ :)

    It IS so important that we continue to struggle toward equality, but the way we do that is not to become hypersensitive and censor our fucking JOKES because, oops, we might offend somebody!

    The problem is that too many people nowadays are falling over themselves to be offended. If you need to analyse a remark to decide whether you find it offensive or not then that should be telling you something!

    Jim.

  74. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    , PLEASE block or ban me for being a gay man unafraid of using a friggin’ word that I’ve been called in real life without any sense of irony behind it!

    Jebus, the unnecessary drama drips from your evidenceless post

  75. slow17motion says

    Okay, listen, NerdOfAnnoyingHandles–this is a forum. It is not a dissertation. Presenting ideas to be bandied about does not require that you have a works cited at the end of your post.

    And–that being said–he actually has presented compelling evidence on several threads AND on his Youtube channel regarding the topics he’s discussing. However, this is an internet forum. You can hardly expect each comment to be sourced and peer reviewed.

    That’s not to say that someone can just spout out crap with absolute disregard for reality. He really isn’t doing that–but you can hardly expect someone to source themselves in the midst of a discussion. It’s an unfair expectation that nobody here frequently adheres to anyway.

    Consciousness Razor:

    Have you watched Jim’s videos? Doesn’t sound that way.

  76. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Presenting ideas to be bandied about does not require that you have a works cited at the end of your post.

    Actually yes, you are required a scientific blog to back your inane fuckwittery with evidence you aren’t blow smoke out of your ass. Which is what you are doing.

  77. Tethys says

    noelplum

    Of course, i suppose it depends crucially on whether you view Shermer’s statement as descriptive or normative. clearly, i viewed it as descriptive; if you viewed his statement as normative (that it is right and proper that scepticism is a guy thing) then it is clearly sexist. Maybe this gets to the heart of the issue and explains the disagreement?

    What high-minded twaddle.

    Labeling an activity as “a guy thing” is sexist, unless the activity is producing sperm.

  78. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Have you watched Jim’s videos?

    Videos aren’t evidence, they are OPINION. Worthless bullshit in a SCIENTIFIC discussion.

  79. says

    Nerd @568

    What ‘evidence’ do you propose we supply you with to prove that descriptive and normative readings of a remark would mean different things?

    Some of your requests are really wierd

    Jim

  80. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    Yes, PZ, please but me on automoderation for ironically using a homophobic slur in a completely non-offensive way.

    ? No, that was offensive.

    Please, PLEASE block or ban me for being a gay man unafraid of using a friggin’ word that I’ve been called in real life without any sense of irony behind it!

    That’s not what I’m suggesting. I’ve called myself a faggot here before, and so have other gay men. There are some valid reasons for doing so. There isn’t one in your comment:

    As far as the “patriarchal definitions of masculinity”–yeah, it’s tough being a boy that doesn’t fit in with the rest of the boys. Ah, well, fuckin’ cry about it, you faggot.

    You’re just saying “fuckin’ cry about it, you faggot.” There isn’t anything ironic here — you’re agreeing with the sentiment that a gay man who doesn’t like being expected to conform to social expectations about masculinity should just fucking cry about it.

    Hey, I know your type. You have learned your strategies for enduring homophobia and you feel that someone else who shows any sign of weakness deserves what they get. I disagree.

  81. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    What ‘evidence’

    Cite the literature for reality. Your OPINION can and is dismissed without evidence…

  82. consciousness razor says

    Of the less than 5% that are women, a significant proportion are male-to-female transsexuals, and so they are genetically male.

    This is normal across all philosophical and all the more serious rational areas of interest.

    Nope. Philosophers are mostly men, but definitely not 95% men.

  83. thepint says

    Reads slow17motion @ 527 and FACEPALMS

    Aw fucksticks, one of THOSE geek snobs AND doesn’t give a shit about taking other people’s feelings into account when choosing his words?

    Well isn’t that just peachy? Here’s a clue, from one geek to another (and no, I’m not going to bother listing my cred to you because I don’t fucking have to) – you know who gets to be a geek? Anyone who wants to, in any way they want. And you sure as hell don’t get to judge who is and isn’t a “real geek,” Snowflake, bigger names than you have tried, have been publicly excoriated for it, and rightly so.

  84. consciousness razor says

    Have you watched Jim’s videos? Doesn’t sound that way.

    Why would that matter? Did you read my comment?

  85. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    Jim,

    The problem is that too many people nowadays are falling over themselves to be offended. If you need to analyse a remark to decide whether you find it offensive or not then that should be telling you something!

    Go fuck yourself. I didn’t need to analyze anything, you lying piece of shit, and I didn’t say I was “offended”. I just fucking hate having to deal with homophobia every goddamned day and I’d like to be able to take a break sometimes. I’d like to not always be reminded that I’m a second class citizen. And now here you are goading on this abusive troll who’s calling other gay men by homophobic slurs? Really Jim what the fuck is your problem? Back up a minute and think.

  86. slow17motion says

    Nerd of–ugh…:

    Evidenceless? Aside from that not really being a proper word, why would I need to evidence the fact that I’ve been called a name? You are evidence-obsessed! Get a patch or something!

    Jadecawk (heh, see what I did there):

    No, toxic maculinities (PLURAL MASCULINITY!) have nothing to do with my desire for sweaty, buff men. However, that’s not going to stop me from going to bgeast.com and purchasing Austin Cooper’s latest videos.

    Actually, I was just pointing out that masculinity isn’t always toxic. It can be intoxicating though! ZING!

    I need to stop drinking, it’s only Thursday.

    noelplum99:

    I find offensive comedy to be the tits (as they say in England–or as I’d imagine them talking in the England from my imagination). Jim Jefferies is absolutely amazing… I have a feeling that his comedy would not be welcome on FTBs despite him actually being very pro-gay and having a similar agenda.

    I’ve been bleaching my hair for two years. I got an eyebrow piercing. My students don’t really pick up on my gayness because I’m so damn manly that it counterbalances my gayness. My dad knew that I was gay for many years before I bleached though, so I guess he knew it’d happen eventually.

    After watching your initial vids I never assumed that you were gay (before I saw you mention that you had a wife). If you were, I believe that more vids would have been posted with you in your fireman’s (NO, FIREFIGHTER, DAMN ME AND MY ADHERENCE TO THE PATRIARCHY AND…) uniform.

    On a different note, I did enjoy the hell out of that weird vid you did that time where you were pretending to be different animals. It was creepy, unnerving, and awkward–as only the best Youtube videos are.

    (See guys, I actually watch stuff before commenting on it! Take note!)

  87. says

    Consciousness razor @576

    I can scarcely believe you wrote it, but here it is:

    That describes the content of your videos, doesn’t it? The fact you so rarely address feminist issues would skew the results.

    Ok, so I was discussing expected female attendance at atheist and sceptic conventions/conferences. Note: I was NOT discussing attendances at feminist cons.

    I quoted my channel as an example of something that is part of the YT ATHEIST community because, in my pea size brain for some fucking reason i thought that might give a better indicator of women on YT interested in atheism (what, with it being an ATHEIST channel, and all) than a channel that puts out feminist videos.

    I am quite sure that channels that exclusively dish out feminist-centric videos will have a higher percentage of female viewers. but here is a thing: maybe they are going to feminist conventions and conferences (which i assume you are all actively and vociferously campaigning to make 50:50 female:male attendance).

    Jim

  88. ezekiel says

    Videos aren’t evidence, they are OPINION. Worthless bullshit in a SCIENTIFIC discussion.

    Cite the literature for reality. Your OPINION can and is dismissed without evidence…

    lolwut?

    I would venture to say that opinion probably is valid in a philosophical discussion. It’s not cut-and-dried, right-or-wrong in the same way that math or physics might be. The English language is a cornucopia of ambiguity and to try to assert that anyone is “sexist” because of a particular language construct just strikes me as somewhat disingenuous. It’s almost as if you’re actively looking for things to get offended about.

    Noels right: some of your requests are really … weird.

  89. ksolway says

    @consciousness razor

    Philosophers are mostly men, but definitely not 95% men.

    You’re probably thinking of people who are associated with academic philosophy departments.

    People in academic philosophy departments are not philosophers by any stretch of the imagination.

    Nietzsche was a philosopher. Kierkegaard was a philosopher. The Buddha was a philosopher. Academic philosophers aren’t even in the ballpark.

  90. says

    Of course, i suppose it depends crucially on whether you view Shermer’s statement as descriptive or normative. clearly, i viewed it as descriptive; if you viewed his statement as normative (that it is right and proper that scepticism is a guy thing) then it is clearly sexist

    it’s sexist even if it’s descriptive, because it was proffered as an explanation for why there are fewer women.

  91. slow17motion says

    strange gods,

    You apparently ARE tripping over yourself to be offended because he was addressing me. It’s about me! ME ME ME!!!

    So, yeah, I guess he proved his point.

    Do I find people weak who get insulted by a word? Um, yes. It’s a word. Suck it up, Nancy.

    thepint,

    Why would I care what “bigger names” have done?

    BTW, no, not everyone who wants to be a geek just automatically gets to be one. It is like a club, and no, not everyone can get in. Enjoy your view from beyond the velvet rope, my friend. I’ll be rewatching season five of Buffy on Amazon Prime and laughing at how poorly they edited the widescreen version of the show (so predictable, since the editors never had any input from Mutant Enemy). For shame!

    JayWalk, erm, Jadehawk:

    I never attempt block quotes out of fear of a block quote fail. Such a dangerous proposition, those block quotes.

  92. says

    Actually, I was just pointing out that masculinity isn’t always toxic.

    no, really?! shocking.

    I guess that’s why I specified that the problem is toxic masculinites. Because there aren’t any other kind, and hence adjectives are necessary. Because that’s how English works.

  93. slow17motion says

    noelplum99:

    Why would we expect women to be interested in any channels dedicated to things other than feminism? Perhaps if you made a few videos regarding the effectiveness of Swiffer Wet Jets, you’d get more female views?

  94. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    he was addressing me.

    And the two of you were talking about who complained about the use of “butthurt”, and therefore you were talking about me.

    Do I find people weak who get insulted by a word? Um, yes. It’s a word. Suck it up, Nancy.

    You can consider me weak. That’s not much of a concern to me. But that doesn’t justify trying to hurt me for it.

  95. consciousness razor says

    Ok, so I was discussing expected female attendance at atheist and sceptic conventions/conferences.

    So? How is that a response to what SC, then you, then I said? She said to consider your own content, you described it, and I pointed out what you apparently didn’t notice about it. Is this so hard to follow?

    By the way, how exactly could you cover “issues relating to religion, atheism, moral philosophy etc.” without delving into feminism fairly often? Is it reasonable to expect discussion of the effects religion has on half the population? How half the population relates to the atheist movement? Discuss moral philosophy which addresses issues for half the population?

    Which half of the population do you belong in? And why should you pretend that your half of the population is the “default”?

  96. says

    Nerd @579

    A party line which requires citations to the academic literature, not just recitation of OPINION. Funny how MRA fuckwits are long on OPINION, but short in EVIDENCE and citations.

    Are we going to get back again to you demanding a citation and reference from Google Scholar to show i have publically condemned online threats again? That me recording myself and putting it on the internet for thousands to see isn’t ‘evidence’ of me publically condemning threats and that i should get myself studied and peer reviewed to reach your lofty standards?
    Please give me a ‘sellotape warning’ if we are heading that way again. A bit like a trigger warning but just to give me time to go and buy a roll of tape to tape up my sides when they split with laughter!

    You are diamond, you really are – i love you for it

    Jim

  97. slow17motion says

    strange gods:

    He was addressing ME!!! We might have been talking around you but we weren’t necessarily talking about you. Or something.

    And I’m trying to HURT you? And I’m the one being accused of dramatics!

  98. slow17motion says

    You see, JadeHawk, I’m quite aware of how the English language works, though your condescension is noted. Actually, I have like three degrees (including a MA in English), so I have EVIDENCE!!! (I know a certain someone who would be happy to see that I have evidence!)

    It just seems to me that any amount of masculinity would be considered toxic by this forum. Gender roles, sexism, bah!

  99. says

    Tethys @586

    Labeling an activity as “a guy thing” is sexist, unless the activity is producing sperm.

    Low-brow soundbite twaddle.

    At least my twaddle was high brow and made sense.

    Jim

  100. consciousness razor says

    You’re probably thinking of people who are associated with academic philosophy departments.

    More like professional philosophers, but that’s because I thought you might want to make a falsifiable claim. Instead, you want a moving goalpost. Have fun playing with yourself.

  101. says

    Strange Gods @595

    My comment was a general observation, not aimed at your comment. Really. I don’t like you one jot and if my comment HAD specifically referred to your exchange with slow17motion i would be more than happy to say so, but it was simply a general observation of the way the world is going.

    Jim

  102. slow17motion says

    I’m tapping out for the night. It has been an experience here, my first day (and my last…?) on FTB! Keep on fightin’ the good fight, noelplum99!

  103. says

    slow17motion @596

    Evidenceless? Aside from that not really being a proper word, why would I need to evidence the fact that I’ve been called a name? You are evidence-obsessed! Get a patch or something!

    Have a look at this, you will piss yourself.
    http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/09/13/repudiation/comment-page-1/#comment-455587
    comments 372, 376, 383, 384, 387 and 391

    i challenege anyone to look at those comments and not come away with the conclusion that Nerd is absolutely insane.

    Jim.

  104. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    My comment was a general observation, not aimed at your comment.

    Then you’re a dumbass, unable to keep track of what the fuck you’re replying to. If you didn’t want to endorse what he said about “butthurt” then you shouldn’t have responded to it without challenging it.

    Heck, right now you could be acknowledging that I was not wrong to ask people not to use that word. If you have a shred of principle, you can still do so in reply to this comment.

  105. slow17motion says

    He quoted me. Then he replied to me. You’re the dumbass, strange…

    I’m really leaving now. I swear.

  106. Tethys says

    Low-brow soundbite twaddle.

    At least my twaddle was high brow and made sense.

    As Jadehawk explained, no your comment did not make sense, which is why I called it high-brow twaddle.

    At least you spelled my nym correctly, even though you couldn’t manage a cogent point.

  107. says

    jadehawk @600

    it’s sexist even if it’s descriptive, because it was proffered as an explanation for why there are fewer women

    But isn’t it an explanation? As I mention in an (as yet unreleased) video, I used to go to the Clothes Show Live which is a massive fashion exhibition in the UK. i would say 80+% of attendees were female. If someone were to ask why most attendees at that exhibition were female would it really be sexist to point out that women are generally more interested in fashion and that the exhibition was simply reflecting that – which is EXACTLY the descriptive reading of what Shermer said.

  108. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nerd needs an evidence intervention.

    No, you need an OPINION intervention. OPINION is not evidence. It can and often is bullshit.

  109. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    i challenege anyone to look at those comments and not come away with the conclusion that Nerd is absolutely insane.

    I challenge anybody to look at Jim’s posts today and not com away with the conclusion it is a delusional evidenceless fool without cogency. Works both ways Jim, and you always lose without proving you are right.

  110. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    My comment was a general observation,

    Observation = OPINION = *POOF* dismissed as bullshit.

  111. says

    Consciousness Razor @606

    there comes a point, and it has just arrived, where i have to say to you that if you wish to critique my content then you are going to have to go and have a look at it.

    If, in the mean time, you want to explain to me why the documentary hypothesis; the historical origins of the israelites; Plantinga’s EAAN; holocaust justification by the deuteronomic historian; promoting pessimistic incompatibilism; atemporal agency or the incorrect application of ontological arguments require a specific gendered perspective? Please do tell.

  112. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    He quoted me. Then he replied to me.

    Yeah, he quoted you talking about those of us who’d objected to the use of the term.

  113. says

    @ ezekiel

    pointless bickering

    The differences between FTB and Slyme Pit are trivial?

    I’m what you might call an “independent” atheist.

    “independent” —> “(willfully) ignorant of social iniquities”?

    I hope to start up a local atheist group

    Why? Is there any social relevance to “independent” atheism?

    I am honestly sick to death of the civil war between FTB and the SlymePit.

    Don’t bother trying to find differences in our positions vis-a-vis atheism per se. They are likely trivial. Here, in large part, our atheism is merely a by-product of our humanistic views. You are mistaking the tail for the dog.

    *making an observation*

    An inconsiderate observation. The movement is skewed for far more weighty reasons than the suggested “differences” between the sexes. Women in the atheist movement have been complaining for a long time at the overt sexism making them feel unwelcome. Why do you ignore this simple and obvious fact and, instead, leap onto Shermer’s new hobby-horse?

    What is the point of your atheism ezekiel? Will you stand for anything other than rejection of fairytales?

    @ the pint

    *waves*

    @ Krasnaya Koshka

    {proffers hugs}

  114. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Please do tell.

    Why? Take them where they belong to a mental wanking site. Google could be your friend for inane senseless discussion. At a SCIENTIFIC site where reality is checked, either back your arguments or shut the fuck up. Welcome to science.

  115. Janine: Hallucinating Liar says

    Why would we expect women to be interested in any channels dedicated to things other than feminism? Perhaps if you made a few videos regarding the effectiveness of Swiffer Wet Jets, you’d get more female views?

    The slow one loves some sexist humor.

    So fucking funny!

  116. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    surreal as it always is

    Surreal from your end due to lack of reality check.

  117. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    kate_waters:
    Please see The Lounge.
    You are awesome and there is a place for you in the post apocalyptic Pharyngula commune.

  118. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    ezekiel:

    From the outside, this pointless bickering is ridiculous and doesn’t serve any purpose other than to give well-established members a free rein to shout down anyone with a difference of opinion.

    I don’t care if you’re on the inside, outside, or some combo of both:
    the Slymepitters are in the wrong.
    These are people that treat women like shit.
    They don’t care about advancing feminism.
    They treat so many people inhumanly.
    They are the antithesis of what Phayrngula–and FtB at large–stands for.

    The Slymepit is Lex Luthor to FreetThoughtBlogs’ Superman.

    The bickering between the two is because the ‘Pit actively seeks to silence women and treat their concerns as insignificant. There is no equivalence to be drawn. There is no “both sides are just as bad” argument. If you think that, you seriously have a critical thinking malfunction.

  119. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    No, no. That’s not it.

    Lex Luthor is a genius.

  120. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    Krasnaya:
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I’m sorry that such abuse happened to you.

  121. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    Alex Trent maybe.

  122. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    Perhaps the Slymepit is more like the Parasite.

    ! That’s apropos.

    (Fleas.)

  123. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    I really want to add “Independent Atheist” to my ‘nym, but I do not want to sully “The Queer Shoop” with such stupidity…

  124. says

    Lex Luthor is a genius.

    Bizzaro might be a better analogy: A twiested, ugly cariacature of Superman who stands for the opposite of Superman’s ideals and insist that he’s the real thing and Supes is the imposter.

  125. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    NOELPLUM99/JIM/MRA/FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT:
    I’m going to refer to you however the fuck I want to dirtbag.
    Until you unlock the key to your humanity and realize how wrongheaded you’ve been, I’m going to refer to you however I want to, you MRA piece of shit. Go back to the fucking Slymepit!

  126. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    Gnumann:

    But for all my faults, I’m not the one who’s arguing from personal incredulity.

    Look, I’m going to need some links if I’m to believe you have faults. From what I’ve read of you, you are good people.

  127. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    ahmet:

    How can it be sexist if what he said is true ?

    Look. Deeper.

    There are fewer women who speak up about matters of skepticism. If that’s true, or if it’s false…*why* is that the case?

    Damn, do you have no depth?

  128. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    slow17motion:
    you can stop “just sayin”.

    Join the ranks of noelplum, bishoptakesknight, justin vacula and all the other shitheads that hate Pharyngula and still come here.
    For some reason, the regulars at Pharyngula don’t venture to the Slymepit…

  129. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    After that fucking pile of sexist, misogynistic bullshit at 559, I really want to throw up. Where was this D00d raised? This douchenozzle fails at basic humanity.

  130. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    That’s fucking it.
    I’m done with this fucking piece of shit.

    Furthermore, how disadvantaged are gays in my society (I live in the US)? I came out my junior year of high school.

    Really?
    Fucking really?
    If you gave two shits about your fellow humans…if you cared at all about improving the lot of those around you…
    YOU WOULD NEVER SAY SOMETHING SO FUCKING HEARTLESS.
    You are scum.
    You suck the bottom of swamps.
    Gay people suffer more than you can ever know. I’m happy you were able to come out without the consequences others face.
    Yes, do you hear that: others face consequences.

    You fucking heartless piece of gutter trash shit.
    I HATE people like you.
    You deny the struggles we go through EVERY. FUCKING. DAY.
    You and all your fucking privileges.
    You and your ability to make it through life without the level of difficulty we have to deal with.
    You get to dismiss our very real concerns.
    You disgust me.
    People like YOU are what’s wrong with the world.
    How DARE you treat the concerns of real people as if they are ‘not a big deal’??!!
    How DARE you minimize the struggles people have gone through JUST TO BE TREATED AS A HUMAN BEING??!!

    Matthew Sheppard died because of people like you.
    He died because people didn’t think he was a human being deserving of equal rights.

    You have raised my ire like it has not been raised before.
    The feelings I have right now are beyond any I have felt in a while.

    And yet…
    And yet…
    I won’t deny your basic humanity.
    I won’t deny your right to life.
    I won’t treat you like you treat queers and women as.

    I will NOT sink to your level.

    But I still despise you and everything you say you gutter trash, scum sucking piece of Slyme.

  131. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    slow17motion:

    It has been an experience here, my first day (and my last…?) on FTB

    I hope it is your last. You have contributed NOTHING. Neither you nor Jim have added anything of value. Both of you scumbag, sexist shitheads have any value to add here.

    Both of you and any who deny the basic human rights of those around you.
    I wish you would all go live on a desert island so that those of us who are decent human beings won’t have to deal with your shit.

  132. says

    @ the pint

    Hell of a thread to pop my head back into, huh?

    You certainly hit the ground running. Welcome back.

    @ slow17motion

    Everybody grows up with advantages and disadvantages, whether they’re black, gay, a woman, an atheist, a vegetarian–whatever

    Channeling the Slyme Pit I see.

    @ ksolway

    I’m intrigued, ksolway. You created the biggest brainfart on the Internet and then come back here to try and top that. Did you try my little experiment upthread?

    You drag out the Armature of Authoritarianism and try to make new shit stick to it (ksolway’s misogyny, Hendrick’s racism). But it is all very clear to the rest of us what is holding it up. Your thinking is as boring as it is unoriginal. Come up with something new.

    Link

  133. slow17motion says

    Tony, did you ever think that the reason you were treated poorly was not because you were gay, but because you’re an asswipe?

    Matthew Shepard died because of people like me? People like–other gay men? Funny, I thought he died because two bigoted rednecks pistol whipped him to death. I can see how a suburban school teacher who is openly gay and has no criminal history (nor any inclination towards violence) has a lot in common with two guys who pistol whipped some dude to death.

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

  134. slow17motion says

    By the way, I signed back on and posted just so you’d know that I’ll be back!!! Count on it!

  135. Rey Fox says

    Hell of a thread to pop my head back into, huh?

    Jeez, no kidding. Did you see that conceited douchewaffle try to out-Buffy you? I mean, I’ve seen some sad things in my day, but that really has to take the cake.

  136. Rey Fox says

    I suppose when you have absolutely nothing else to be proud of, no redeeming factors at all, you’ll beat your chest over your encyclopedic knowledge of a television show.

  137. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    slow17motion:

    Tony, did you ever think that the reason you were treated poorly was not because you were gay, but because you’re an asswipe?

    I never said *I* was treated poorly. Great mindreading trick there.
    What makes me an asswipe? Because I think you, jim, and the other MRA fans, anti feminists, and anti progressives are shit heads?
    Great.
    I’m happy for that.
    I don’t want to be anything like you people.
    I’m glad to be a decent human being.

    Matthew Shepard died because of people like me? People like–other gay men?

    You actively deny the pain and suffering other gay people go through, just because you didn’t suffer the same mistreatment. I’m glad you didn’t. Doesn’t mean others were immune to discrimination. Every time you open your mouth to minimize the struggles of other queers because your privilege affords you protection, you add to environment that resulted in Matthew Sheppards death.

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

    Never said it wasn’t fuckwit.
    People like you make it harder by minimizing the difficulties of those people who aren’t privileged like you.
    Shut the fuck up you shithead.

  138. ksolway says

    @theophontes

    You raised the prospect that “Whites and Blacks are adapted for different tasks”.

    But there is no evidence that whites and blacks are adapted for different tasks.

    By contrast there is mountains of evidence that men and women are adapted for different tasks. Men cannot give birth to children for one thing. I can’t believe you are unaware of this.

    brainfart

    Toilet humor and logical fallacies aren’t my thing, so you’ll have to find someone else to converse with.

    Your crap might be acceptable on these blogs, but it’s not acceptable in my company.

  139. says

    @ slow17motion

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

    You can only speak for yourself here. You made it and I am happy for you. But there are many, around the world, who do not share your (relative) good fortune. You, slow17motion, are a quintessential idiot.

    Thank Zeus we have people, like Tony, who think beyond themselves. Who think.

  140. Rey Fox says

    I mean, here I was thinking that being a geek meant being unashamedly enthusiastic about some body of knowledge. I guess what it really means is engaging in preening tribalistic behavior that would shame a football fan.

  141. says

    @ ksolway

    But there is no evidence that whites and blacks are adapted for different tasks.

    Hendrick would disagree. He would point out that “swartes” don’t have it in their nature to run factories or have a need for mathematics. His “proof”: Very few own factories and very few can do higher maths. ¹

    By contrast there is mountains of evidence that men and women are adapted for different tasks.

    Even Plato, a poster-child for misogyny, would disagree with you on this. Has our thinking not grown since?

    Men cannot give birth to children for one thing.

    Thomas Beatie. (ding,ding, no cigar for ksolway.)

    Your crap might be acceptable on these blogs, but it’s not acceptable in my company.

    The logical conclusion is that you should fuck off.

    .

    ¹ I write this in the present tense but refer, of course, to his own time. He has since been proved wrong. He ignored all the social reasons (of his own making no less) for the state of affairs … and took his prejudice and priviledge for evidence.

  142. says

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

    Take your own advice. Playing chill girl here isn’t going to get you anywhere nor is playing scornful fag. There are a lot of us queer folk here who aren’t impressed by your immature assholery played to no point.

    It’s rather obvious you have no interest in any sort of actual discussion, nor any interest in behaving as though you have a glimmer of what it’s like to be a decent human being, so wandering off to a community more suited to your idiocy would be a good idea.

  143. slow17motion says

    theophontes –

    I get that people have it tough all over the world. That’s unfortunate. However, the majority of people posting here cry and whine incessantly–which is not helpful in the least. People tend to shut down when all they hear is complaining and accusations. BLAMING everybody that you consider privileged for your feeling of being disenfranchised is only going to drive you deeper into FTB dreamland and further from the people who you should actually be trying to reach.

    Am I minimizing others’ suffering? Well, sure, when I feel as if they’re excessively whining about something. Would I tell the family of a victim of genocide to buck up? Um, no. Would I tell some douche (OH NO! I SAID IT!!!) on FTB to quit whining about his emotional issues on a forum? Ehm, yeah, probably. Especially considering the fact that most people posting on this forum would crumble into a pile of ash if they actually ever experienced what it truly means to be the subject of discrimination.

    Ah, Tony… Since you wrote me an epic poem I figured you were somehow revealing some sort of deep inner pain. I suppose you just bust out the prose for any occasion, then? Damn, I felt special.

    I have zero sympathy for adults who come out of the closet in modern day America–or any of the more civilized countries–you know, the type that don’t kill people for being gay. Kids I do sympathize with because they have no escape–they lack the kind of freedom necessary to remove themselves from harmful environments… Adults of the first world, however, need to quit complaining. It runs counter to the cause.

    As far as mind reading goes, how do you know what I’ve dealt with as far as being openly gay? I came out in high school, bud. I, however, don’t feel the need to cry about my specific experiences on internet forums. Your assessment of the Matthew Shepard murder is pretty moronic considering the actual circumstances of his death. It had nothing to do with minimizing the struggles of gays. It had to do with Shepard trusting the wrong bigot in a place where (ironically) gay men felt comfortable getting rides with other men. Would his murderers have still killed him had they been more knowledgeable about the struggles of gay men in America? Yep, probably. I doubt they’d care.

    Also, since the year was 1998 and I came out in 1999, I sincerely doubt my sophomore attitudes and closeted young self had much to do with Matthew Shepard’s murder. Personally, I take zero responsibility for Matthew Shepard’s death. Although, I know how tempting it is to compare forum-users with serial killers and rapists and stuff when they disagree on stuff.

    Matthew Shepard’s death highlighted the bigotry and hatred still present in our society. Sure, it resonated in the gay community and in the country as a whole–but why is it whenever anyone on this forum shares a dissenting opinion they’re compared to some murdering jackass or (from another thread here) a serial killer of women! It’s completely asinine.

    In reality I’m really not trying to minimize anyone’s struggles–I’m just attempting to point out that they’re struggles. Everyone faces obstacles and if you’re gay, grow a thicker skin because you’re gonna need it. Our society is moving in the right direction. Gays don’t face even a fraction of the difficulties other homosexuals experienced a hundred years ago. That is NOT a justification for the bullshit that they face today–but an attempt to put things in the proper perspective. Keep fighting the good fight, but you’re not going to win anybody over by crying about it like a big baby. You make arguments–rational, logical arguments–and you win people over by showing them how correct you are and how wrong it is to devalue someone based upon his or her sexual orientation. People respect a backbone, not a wimp. No movers or shakers of social justice ever got anything across by complaining.

    I don’t remember ever reading about Martin Luther King’s “I Had A Good Cry” speech.

    Lastly, you mention my privilege? How exactly to you know that I experience said privilege? Are you a mind reader? That knife cuts both ways.

    I’m a success because I chose to be. I earned an education and I work my ass off to pay the giant debt I accrued getting it. I came out and endured the consequences in high school. I’m the only openly gay man in my workplace–and I deal with hundreds of kids a day who think “gay” and “fag” are good adjectives to use for other students they see as inferior. I wouldn’t call myself privileged–but I also don’t complain about it on a daily basis. I’m damn proud to be an outspoken gay man, especially considering so many men are scared to admit that they’re gay well into old age–the wimps.

  144. slow17motion says

    Oh, Caine, you really showed me! I’m sooo immature–I suppose I’d be seen as more mature if I used fun words like “assholery”.

    theophontes:

    Even if our society openly embraced homosexuality, there is still an element of it that would be difficult for parents to accept. Parents love to see themselves mirrored to some extent in their children. They like the prospect of biological grandchildren… Okay, not ALL parents care about that shit, but many do. Even with changing attitudes, it is NEVER going to be easy to be different or to fall short of your parents’ dreams for you. I agree, it should be easier than it is.

    I never addressed your “(relative) good fortune” comment. When talking about one’s “good fortune” I suppose it’s always relative, right? I’m addressing the people on this forum specifically here–based on what I’ve read that they’ve posted. The world is simply too big to compare one man’s struggles to the other 7 billion’s. I understand that you’re attempting to provide perspective, but telling me that gays are being killed in other countries around the world doesn’t change the fact that in America it has very little bearing on your life.

    Most the people who are posting here right now are not doing so from some hut in the heart of darkness–where atheist conventions aren’t generally held. I sincerely doubt that an article about some dude’s allegedly sexist comment and Ophelia Benson’s response to it really interests many outside of this little circle jerk–which is somewhat contained in the rather predictable countries (with a few happy exceptions I’m sure).

  145. slow17motion says

    By the way, Caine, what exactly is the threat here? You’ll send an alert because dear old Tony called you a shithead? Aren’t we the delicate little flowers here on FTB…

  146. slow17motion says

    One last thing:

    My idea that complaining runs counter to the cause of a self-proclaimed progressive is not to suggest one remain silent. That is absolutely NOT the best course of action. However, when speaking up, one should be sure to do so in a way that draws others in–a way that elicits respect.

    “Whaaaaaa, the patriarchy, male privilege, somebody used the word “douche”, I simply cant take a joke!” That’s simply not gonna cut it.

    This conversation reminds me of this:

    “But what else could I expect from a bunch of low-rent, no account hoodlums like you? Hoodlums yes! I mean you and your friends, your whole sex. Throw ‘em in the sea for all I care! Throw ‘em in and wait for the bubbles. Men with your groping and spitting, all groin, no brain, three billion of you passing around the same worn-out urge. Men! With your… Sales!”

  147. Tethys says

    slowwitted17

    Every post you have made demonstrates that you are a putrid doucheweasel. Its also apparent that you have the self-awareness of a typical abusive narcissist, so I’m sure we won’t have to put up with your shit for long..

  148. says

    @ slow17motion

    BLAMING everybody that you consider privileged for your feeling of being disenfranchised is only going to drive you deeper into FTB dreamland and further from the people who you should actually be trying to reach.

    Getting peoples’ backs up is a very good way to get them out of their comfort zones. I have no doubt it may drive some further away from our point of view for a time. But where do they go to (at least in their thoughts or arguments)? They can double down I guess. Often, however, they are driven out of their holes and thereby, being exposed, are forced to reconsider what they are to call home.

    There are many examples of commenters here in FTB who have been driven to reconsider their positions in such a manner (be it the effects of whining, rudeness, repetition, etc). We have had a person arguing for months in favour of libertarianism, only to later realise that the position is untenable and that we are better off in celebrating our more sociable qualities. He is now all the happier as a person for this. (And we are all the stronger for his better nature amongst us.) There is nothing wrong with precipitating such a crisis¹ if it can lead to such results.

    Re: “FTB dreamland” There is some truth in this, though not quite in the sense that I think you intend. There is an element of Utopia here. It is OK to be open here. To share and to cry if need be. If you need to whine then that is fine too. But what is most important is that we have a golden thread running through the whole. One that supports, heals and empowers. This runs far beyond mere atheism. This is a space in which we can dream, share, learn and educate. You are more than welcome to join if you feel this thread drawing you forward.

    Especially considering the fact that most people posting on this forum would crumble into a pile of ash if they actually ever experienced what it truly means to be the subject of discrimination.

    Oh, I left off the part about truth. If you are going to stay and make statements like “considering the fact“, you may well be called to back up your statements with facts.
    You come across as insensitive when you say things like “what it truly means”. That people are sensitive to matters of iniquity I hold in the very highest regard and it is a trait that I would like to cultivate more in myself. It gives one the ability to anticipate and stop situations before they develop into what you might chose to regard as worthy of complaining about. I do not buy into the whole “Dear Muslima” argument. It is both dangerous and counterproductive.

    .

    ¹ The Greeks considered the “crisis” to be the turning point in the course of a disease. I find this sense of the term apt.

  149. John Morales says

    [meta]

    slow17motion, you are pointlessly derailing this thread with your ego-stroking, though your ideas are simplistic.

    @664:

    Lastly, you mention my privilege? How exactly to you know that I experience said privilege? Are you a mind reader? That knife cuts both ways.
     
    I’m a success because I chose to be.

    Nothing to do with opportunity, then — that is an irrelevance to your (ahem) self-proclaimed success.

    @667:

    One last thing: My idea that complaining runs counter to the cause of a self-proclaimed progressive is not to suggest one remain silent. That is absolutely NOT the best course of action. However, when speaking up, one should be sure to do so in a way that draws others in–a way that elicits respect.

    You imagine you’re garnering respect here? ;)

    (Why do you qualify your contention with “self-proclaimed”, unless you consider it doesn’t apply to the complement of the set of progressives?)

  150. says

    I tuned out the most recent string of posts from slowmotion, but since he seems so obsessed with talking about personal experience: I’m one of those queers who has personally suffered basically zero negative consequences stemming therefrom, the marriage thing aside. Nevertheless, I am aware of all of the queer folk who suffer much worse consequences stemming from people’s unwillingness to treat them as human beings, and I understand that this is a bad thing, and that it should stop. Therefore, I do not engage in, support, or tolerate homophobic (/racits/mysogyinistic/transphobic/etc) bullshit. It’s a very simple concept that can be grasped by small children, most primates, probably dogs, and possible reasonably clever raccoons. I’m not certain why slowmotion seems to be having such a hard time grasping it.

  151. says

    @ slow17motion

    They like the prospect of biological grandchildren…

    This varies with times and cultures. (For the Romans of old, adoption was divine.)

    Perhaps if the matter was so trivial it would be time to seek new battles (and they will always be there). But we are far from there. You suggest ‘Merkin gay people have no reason to complain. I need be neither American nor gay to disagree profoundly with this attitude. Most gay people in America have their fundamental human rights trampled on every single day – you cite a prime example: gay marriage. I reserve the right to complain about this angrily and bitterly and far more loudly than mere “whining”.

    I understand that you’re attempting to provide perspective, but telling me that gays are being killed in other countries around the world doesn’t change the fact that in America it has very little bearing on your life.

    I am not simply wishing to “provide perspective”, I am wishing and working for such bigotry in all its forms (lethal and non-lethal) to be eradicated from all human societies. Yes, I would like to make this a global struggle. (Who made you the official ‘Merkin spokesgay anyhow?)

  152. slow17motion says

    I am posting under an article that spawned hundreds of posts–all about a dude who said that something was a “guy thing”. The mere fact that this small remark garnered so much attention, in my opinion, justifies my assertion that people here are not really aware of what it means to be the subject of actual discrimination based upon sex or whatever…

    Furthermore, there’s the mere fact that he’s actually correct that it is more of a guy thing. Evidenced by there being many more men than women at such events.

    There is a difference between being “sensitive to matters of iniquity” and simply coddling a big crybaby. You know what happens to kids who get babied when they cry? They end up crying more. Then they become adults who cry to get attention. Then they get a FTB account.

    As far as this being a Utopia, I am not so new that I’d be unaware of all the nonsense regarding the crap that went down with Dillahunty, A+, and that drama. Ah, utopia…

    Honestly, the reason I joined was because I read a thread where noelplum99 was responding, rather rationally, to other arguments put forth by people on this forum–only to watch him get strawmanned and needlessly insulted. He gets called a sexist pig on just about every single thread. It’s rather disheartening actually having heard the guy’s opinions for years and knowing that he’s NOT a sexist pig–he’s actually a pretty intelligent, big-hearted guy. That’s not to say we’ve agreed on everything. I had a HUGE debate with him on Youtube regarding historical figures and whether or not we can hold them to the standards of today. Unlike FTB we kept it very civil and I had a good time arguing.

    That’s not to say that getting a rise out of the buttholes here isn’t entertaining. It is, but in a different way. (That’s not to say that that was the ONLY reason I came here, it wasn’t, I actually came here to defend a guy whose positions I value and respect.) There is no real ‘debating’ going on most of the time. There’s usually just a discussion among FTB regulars about what level of outrage should be granted to a given subject. Then, once a dissenting opinion appears, it’s time to pile on without ever considering that they may, in fact, actually be correct.

    It’s a sad state of affairs.

    And you’re not getting people’s backs up in the real world. People on the outside look at FTB and kind of shrug and laugh. It’s sad, but it’s true. You’re like the tea party–except you lack the ability to drive the rest of us like the tea party in America drive the republicans.

    Most atheists thought the idea of A+ was retarded. It was and IS retarded. In the end, you guys killed the very movement you sought to create! Sure, noelplum99 did his job by voicing objections the majority of atheists (who were aware of A+) felt–but ultimately, you guys killed it before it even took root. Thanks for that, FTB’ers who were involved!

    And then with the BLOCK BAN BLOCK BAN mentality of FTB, it’s no surprise that people view this little Utopia as more of an island for the ideologically challenged. You’re not the REAL progressives because outside of your little circle jerk nobody cares to listen. You make a lot of noise, but to little fanfare. Things like the Dillahunty incident only demonstrated that you guys aren’t ready for REAL debate and discussion.

    Jim/np99 is being generous by gifting you with his presence. His patience is epic and I have nothing but respect for his perspectives–even the ones I disagree with. I don’t hold most FTB’ers, including PZ, to the same esteem.

    Take from that what you will, it’s late, I’m out! (For real this time, I have to get up in three hours for work…)

  153. says

    Further:

    Apropro Tethys:

    Its also apparent that you have the self-awareness of a typical abusive narcissist, …

    slow17motion, might you not feel more at home at Teh Slyme Pit? What is it you really hope to gain on FTB?

  154. John Morales says

    noelplum99:

    Of course, i suppose it depends crucially on whether you view Shermer’s statement as descriptive or normative.

    You suppose correctly, context indicates your invocation of such a quandary is either foolishness or disingenuity; only one of those views is not perverse.

    To paraphrase its form:
    Q: Why are there more men involved?
    A: Because it’s more of a guy thing.

    It takes a particularly obtuse person to read that piece and imagine that explaining* why the gender difference in participation is so great by claiming it’s more of a guy thing is attempting to answer the question rather than merely restating its basis.

    Look at the context:

    The host, Cara Santa Maria, presented a question: Why isn’t the gender split in atheism closer to 50-50? Shermer explained, “It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.”

    * But grant that perverse reading, and then Shermer’s response becomes a vacuous non sequitur rather than a sexist belief.

    (Which, in Shermer’s case, almost certainly would mean it’s deliberate evasiveness since I hardly consider him as doltish that — i.e. as those who genuinely attempt to defend the claim by this transparently disingenous dodge)

  155. slow17motion says

    Shit, one last thing to your latest post:

    Gay marriage aside, gay men in America DO NOT have their fundamental rights trampled on every day. So dramatic! As a gay man I’ve been called names and individuals have given me problems, but I’ve never been systematically discriminated against.

    Should attitudes change? YES!!! And they are! Actually, the people who are more likely to change their minds are people who know actual gay people. The best things that gay people can do is come out of the closet. Standing up is fantastic.

    Crying about it like a little girl who fell of her tricycle is not the way to make headway.

    As a gay man living in NY, I CAN get married (and soon DOMA will be a thing of the past, hooray!)–and VERY soon it will be recognized federally.

    Who made me the ‘merkin spokesgay? Well, all the ‘merkin gays got together and voted. I came out on top (as I always do). Afterwards we all went out to Denny’s and took turns engaging in safe, responsible public sex acts.

  156. slow17motion says

    *I shouldn’t say that my experience is indicative of every gay man’s experience–however anti-gay discrimination laws are all over the place. If you are being discriminated against in your workplace it’s symptomatic of the attitudes of the men and women at the place in which you work (believe me, I know). In America, according to the law, gay men and women are afforded no less respect, no fewer rights, than any other man woman–the one exception being gay marriage. That’s not to say that once it’s fixed we’re all good… Racism, sexism, homophobia–it never just **poof** goes away… However, I want to note that we were talking about FUNDAMENTAL rights.

  157. John Morales says

    slow17motion:

    The mere fact that this small remark garnered so much attention, in my opinion, justifies my assertion that people here are not really aware of what it means to be the subject of actual discrimination based upon sex or whatever…

    Well, at least you plainly indicate it’s your opinion (which Nerd has duly noted earlier), but your inferential process is yet to be adduced. You seem to be claiming that “complaining about” a “small remark” entails that the the “complainants” are not really aware of what it means to be the subject of actual discrimination based upon sex or whatever.

    Care to exposit the logical path that you have employed in achieving that, um, insight?

  158. says

    @ slow17motion

    Furthermore, there’s the mere fact that he’s actually correct that it is more of a guy thing. Evidenced by there being many more men than women at such events.

    I gave you a perfectly analogous example from the past to show how this manner of thinking is broken (though addressed to ksolway at my #651, 660 and prior). Women in the atheist movement have expressed vocally why they feel driven away from such events. Then you turn around and use this as “evidence”. I trust you can see why this is flawed rationale?

    People on the outside look at FTB and kind of shrug and laugh. It’s sad, but it’s true.

    Er … “true” is a big word. Feel free to provide proof of this. Your level of projection is becoming disconcerting.

  159. says

    Especially considering the fact that most people posting on this forum would crumble into a pile of ash if they actually ever experienced what it truly means to be the subject of discrimination.

    I cannot even begin to express how tired I am of this hoary piece of crap being waved about by every idiot who thinks they are saying something novel and profound.

    I am a 55 year old bisexual, childfree woman who is mixed race. I’ve faced plenty of discrimination. I’ve faced plenty of bigotry.

    It’s blatantly dishonest to play the “you don’t know what it’s like!1!” card, given the global nature of Pharyngula and the diversity of the commentariat. If you’re going to insist on arguing, do so honestly. It may be that you can’t conceive of what others may go through in their lives, but I suggest you give it a try.

  160. coleopteron says

    noelplum99

    But isn’t it an explanation? As I mention in an (as yet unreleased) video, I used to go to the Clothes Show Live which is a massive fashion exhibition in the UK. i would say 80+% of attendees were female. If someone were to ask why most attendees at that exhibition were female would it really be sexist to point out that women are generally more interested in fashion and that the exhibition was simply reflecting that – which is EXACTLY the descriptive reading of what Shermer said.

    It’s an explanation, but not one that carries any weight. Have you considered perhaps that living in a society that deems fashion as the preserve of women and judges men who show an interest – as well as drastically limiting men’s fashion choices in order to preserve manliness – might prevent a lot of men from pursuing a career or even forming an interest in fashion?

    One of the reasons people here are annoyed by your unevidenced assertions for your views is that evidence backing up their views really really isn’t that hard to get. It’s not even Sociology 101. If you want to argue against well-evidenced views you need to bring evidence. Otherwise you just infuriate people with your ignorance.

  161. John Morales says

    [meta]

    slow17motion is so very typical:

    On 13 December 2012 at 10:39 pm: I’m tapping out for the night. It has been an experience here, my first day (and my last…?) on FTB!

    (11 posts later, after a few “one last thing”s, still going strong)

    14 December 2012 at 3:08 am: [blah]

    This is how the slow one seeks to elicit respect.

  162. says

    The mere fact that this small remark garnered so much attention, in my opinion, justifies my assertion that people here are not really aware of what it means to be the subject of actual discrimination based upon sex or whatever…

    Hahahahahaha, oh the handy dandy code breaks out, “mere” “whatever”, meaning bitches be hysterical, complaining and shit.

    It’s obvious you’ve no idea at all of the discrimination women face on a daily basis and your attempts at handwaving are getting downright frantic.

    “Small remark”? Yes, it was that. It was a symptom of a much bigger problem and when that was pointed out, the result was doubling down. Not so small after all.

  163. says

    @ slow17motion

    but I’ve never been systematically discriminated against.

    But you have. It is only of late, that a small number of states have recognised your fundamental human right to marry.

    Our Apartheid analogy: “I live in Soweto, but the Group Areas Act does not discriminate against me because I choose to live in Soweto!”

    Such discriminatory legislation should not exist at all. Whether or not it proscribes your actions in the here and now is neither here nor there.

    You do not need to act the “good neighbour”. Really.

  164. John Morales says

    slow17motion @677:

    However, I want to note that we were talking about FUNDAMENTAL rights.

    You might have been, but the post was talking about CULTURAL realities.

    (Sheesh!)

  165. Stacy says

    Small remark

    It’s telling, people accusing Ophelia of making too big a thing out of Shermer’s remark.

    The funny thing is that she didn’t make a big thing out of it. She pointed it out as part of a discussion about stereotypes, a discussion that wasn’t at all focused on Shermer. He made it a big thing. He, and his brave defenders, got all defensive and made a big honkin’ hyperbolic deal of it.

    (Gee, where have we seen that dynamic before?)

  166. Stacy says

    slow17motion reminds me of jstcr. The same preening, manic self-regard masquerading as critical commentary. He even has the same cute trick of switching to “oh but I’m really a good guy, I share your social justice concerns, I’m just twitting you for your excesses” mode when he senses he’s come across as too obviously callous.

  167. ksolway says

    @coleopteron

    The explanation that women are more interested in fashion has a huge amount of weight in explaining why nearly all attendees of fashion shows are female.

    Women go to fashion shows because they are interested in fashion. They aren’t forced to go at the point of a gun.

    Whether women are interested in fashion because of their genetics, or social factors, or a combination of both, is another question.

  168. coleopteron says

    @Ksolway

    Whether women are interested in fashion because of their genetics, or social factors, or a combination of both, is another question.

    Are you being deliberately obtuse as some sort of performance art or something?

  169. John Morales says

    [meta]

    ksolway, you too are amusing.

    Men aren’t particularly interested in fashion, yet how many men would feel comfortable going out in public wearing women’s clothing?

    (Therefore transvestism doesn’t bother manly men, because it has nothing to do with fashion, but with the obvious and natural way men and women should dress)

  170. says

    Whether women are interested in fashion because of their genetics, or social factors, or a combination of both, is another question.

    My, you’re an idiot. There isn’t a proliferation of male fashion designers, right? There isn’t a market for expensive men’s clothing, right? There are no accessories for men, right? There’s absolutely nothing at all in history which points to fashion being a primary concern of men, right?

    And of course, every single woman on the planet is a slave to fashion and incredibly interested in it. Trufax.

    *eyeroll*

    Learn the first rule of holes.

  171. John Morales says

    [flogging deceased equine]

    Caine, wearing an Armani suit is in no way a fashion statement.

    Neither is wearing hair-gel (as long as it’s a manly one) or using a particular perfume scent (as long as it’s a manly one) or having an expensive wrist-watch (as long as it’s a manly one).

    (And cod-pieces and wigs have never been fashionable!)

    I cannot resist: Shower Products for Men.

  172. ksolway says

    you’re an idiot

    You’re a fuckwit.

    (joining-in the noble spirit of “freethought” blogs, led from the top by PZ Myers himself)

    There isn’t a proliferation of male fashion designers, right?

    The best fashion designers are men, because men are better at designing fashions. There are very few top fashion designers compared to the number of women using the fashions they produce.

    market for expensive men’s clothing,

    Go to any shopping mall and tell me how many shops are concerned with female fashions, including handbags and jewelry, as opposed to men’s clothing shops. I estimate the ratio will be 30:1

    Go to any large department store and tell me how much floor space is dedicated to female fashions, as opposed to men’s clothing. I estimate the ratio will be at least 10:1

    This is because men and women are interested in fashions to differing degrees.

    And I never said that every woman is a slave to fashion. That is an idea you have created in your imagination, in true FTB style. Some women are not at all interested in fashion, and I wish to give those few every encouragement.

  173. says

    So, Jadehawk, what types of masculinity would you not find to be toxic?

    what sort of stupid-ass question is that?
    the ones that don’t rely on the myth of male superiority, and the ones that don’t punish alternative self-expression, of course.

    It just seems to me that any amount of masculinity would be considered toxic by this forum.

    your ill-informed assumptions are worthless.

    But isn’t it an explanation?

    it is a sexist and untrue explanation.

    If someone were to ask why most attendees at that exhibition were female would it really be sexist to point out that women are generally more interested in fashion and that the exhibition was simply reflecting that – which is EXACTLY the descriptive reading of what Shermer said.

    your analogy assumes that what shermer said is true (among other assumptions). it isn’t. it’s a sexist evasion and stereotype, and basically a way to handwave away a problem as “just personal preference”

    As a gay man I’ve been called names and individuals have given me problems, but I’ve never been systematically discriminated against.

    come to this state, and see how that works for ya.

  174. ksolway says

    @John Morales

    Men aren’t particularly interested in fashion, yet how many men would feel comfortable going out in public wearing women’s clothing?

    How comfortable would you be going out in public dressed as a clown, with yard-long shoes, and scaring the children?

  175. Gen, Uppity Ingrate. says

    Holy crap, obvious slow motion troll is obvious and boring.

    ksolway

    The best fashion designers are men, because men are better at designing fashions. There are very few top fashion designers compared to the number of women using the fashions they produce.

    Care to show some evidence for your bare-assed assertation that men are better at designing fasions? Because there are other reasons than “they are just better at it” that more men are considered to be “top” fasion designers than women .

  176. John Morales says

    [OT]

    ksolway :

    How comfortable would you be going out in public dressed as a clown, with yard-long shoes, and scaring the children?

    Heh.

    (Way to miss the point!)

    Clothing is clothing; its only functional purpose is to protect one from the elements (and (I grant) in our culture, to abide by laws prohibiting public nudity and thus avoid official penalties).

    The moment you start preferring one type of clothing over another for the sake of avoiding social opprobrium or personal esthetics, you are humouring fashion.

    (Deny it all you want; the only difference is in the social expectations of how each gender should conform and thus how it’s manifested, but its ubiquity and significance is very real for every person)

  177. ksolway says

    Clothing is clothing; its only functional purpose is to protect one from the elements (and (I grant) in our culture, to abide by laws prohibiting public nudity and thus avoid official penalties).

    Clothing has many other functional purposes. Clothing can be a status symbol, or a sexual display, or a display of one’s personality, or an enhancement of self-identity and self-esteem, or merely a distraction and an entertainment, to name just a few things.

    The moment you start preferring one type of clothing over another for the sake of avoiding social opprobrium or personal esthetics, you are humouring fashion.

    You would definitely be conforming to social expectations, but that’s not the same as taking an active, and time-consuming, and expensive interest in fashion.

    I wouldn’t walk around my local neighbourhood in a flouncy white sheer dress and heels for fear of being beaten up, but nor do I spend even one minute thinking about fashion, and I certainly never dream about clothing, which many women report doing (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

  178. says

    Gen:

    Care to show some evidence for your bare-assed assertation that men are better at designing fasions? Because there are other reasons than “they are just better at it” that more men are considered to be “top” fasion designers than women .

    Between the fuckwitted idiots in this thread and ahmetduran in the other, I’m close to being willing to pay for any argument which is not based on “menz are better at x”.

  179. John Morales says

    ksolway:

    Clothing has many other functional purposes. Clothing can be a status symbol, or a sexual display, or a display of one’s personality, or an enhancement of self-identity and self-esteem, or merely a distraction and an entertainment, to name just a few things.

    Leaving aside that all those functions rely on a cultural context and thus are more or less fashionable to the extent they conform to expectations — unlike protection from the elements — I think that men do all those things no less than women do.

    (If your choice of clothing conforms to that society’s fashion, you are expressing interest it)

    You would definitely be conforming to social expectations, but that’s not the same as taking an active, and time-consuming, and expensive interest in fashion.

    Conforming to social expectations by virtue of what clothing you choose is the very basis of being fashionable, and you’ve just introduced the qualities of how time-consuming and expensive the interest is, as if it were not its purportedly skewed ratio of gender pervasiveness which you were supposedly justifying.

    [1] I wouldn’t walk around my local neighbourhood in a flouncy white sheer dress and heels for fear of being beaten up, but nor do I spend even one minute thinking about fashion, and [2] I certainly never dream about clothing, which many women report doing ([3] not that there’s anything wrong with that).

    1. You don’t spend one minute about it because you have been so well-conditioned to know what type of clothing is appropriate for your public person that you have internalised it.

    2. Leaving aside that the relevant metric for this to be of significance to your opinion would be the ratio of women to men doing such purported dreaming, I think you’ve pulled this out of your nether orifice.

    (Care to substantiate this by providing a reference to empirical data?)

    3. Why did you feel the need to plead this revealing disclaimer?

  180. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Insight: The preponderance of men who insist on drawing rigorous conclusions from comparison of broad, overlapping distributions of subtle, difficlut-to-measure social constructs (e.g. intelligence) for different populations is proof that there is no “math gene” located on the Y chromosome.

    There still could be a stupid gene there, and the above may indicate the existence of a Dunning-Kruger gene. However, more research would be needed, and the thought of coming through more STUPID like that spewed in this thread makes me want to curl up in the fetal position with a hot water bottle on my head.

  181. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Jim/np99 is being generous by gifting you with his presence.

    No, he is a trolling egotistical asshat without cogency and evidence. All OPINION. Which like yours, is *POOF* dismissed as fuckwittery.

  182. says

    A_Ray:

    However, more research would be needed, and the thought of coming through more STUPID like that spewed in this thread makes me want to curl up in the fetal position with a hot water bottle on my head.

    We have been exposed to an exceptional amount of stupid lately. Perhaps we need shots.

  183. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    slow17motion reminds me of jstcr. The same preening, manic self-regard masquerading as critical commentary. He even has the same cute trick of switching to “oh but I’m really a good guy, I share your social justice concerns, I’m just twitting you for your excesses” mode when he senses he’s come across as too obviously callous.

    He also reminds me of a typical liberturd. All ego and arrogance, without empathy. And utterly ignorant of that which it talks about except personal experience, which is anecdote, and mostly irrelevant.

  184. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You are evidence-obsessed! Get a patch or something!

    I’m a scientist. It’s what we do. Your lack of evidence says you have nothing but bullshit, as you have nothing to put up, and can’t shut the fuck up. Welcome to science.

  185. says

    A_Ray:

    ksolway–so how do you explain combovers?

    Not just comb overs, but toupees, bald cure claims, “I’m not only the Hair Club president, I’m also a client”, Grecian Formula, yada, yada, yada.

  186. ksolway says

    @John Morales

    Leaving aside that all those functions rely on a cultural context and thus are more or less fashionable to the extent they conform to expectations — unlike protection from the elements

    Sexual displays (through clothing) have little to do with conforming to expectations. Big breasts are big breasts, broad shoulders are broad shoulders, bare skin is bare skin, etc. These things are physical and biological.

    Likewise, displaying your personality through clothing need have nothing to do with conforming to expectations.

    Regardless, even conforming to expectations can have a useful function.

    I think that men do all those things no less than women do.

    Rubbish. I am a fairly typical man, and as I’ve said, I never even think about clothing. My only motivation for wearing the clothes I do, which I considered as a child and have never had a need to re-think, is to spend as little money on clothes as possible, at the same time as keeping warm and physically protected, and not attracting attention, and not being thrown in jail or getting beaten up.

    These reasons are very different to the reasons that women wear the clothes that they do – generally speaking of course.

    1. You don’t spend one minute about it because you have been so well-conditioned to know what type of clothing is appropriate for your public person that you have internalised it.

    I don’t spend one minute thinking about it for the reasons I listed above.

    The fact is, there is a huge difference between men and women with regard to their interest in fashion – meaning how much time they spend thinking about it, and how much money they spend on it, etc.

    You can’t get around this fact.

    Leaving aside that the relevant metric for this to be of significance to your opinion would be the ratio of women to men doing such purported dreaming, I think you’ve pulled this out of your nether orifice.

    All you have to do is google the research. The fact that you haven’t done it means that you don’t want to know about it.

    Why did you feel the need to plead this revealing disclaimer? ["not that there’s anything wrong with that"]

    You honestly don’t know?

    The rule of FTB and Atheism+ is that whatever a detractor says is automatically misogyny or racism. That’s why detractors have to qualify everything they say, even though their detractions will themselves be held to be misogyny and racism, in accordance with the rule.

  187. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    ezekiel: “I would venture to say that opinion probably is valid in a philosophical discussion. ”

    Ah! I think I see your problem! You think you are having a philosophical discussion. However, this is a science blog, run by a scientist and catering to other scientists and those who love and believe in the scientific method. That means EVIDENCE!

    The problem is that the subject we are talking about has real-world consequences–e.g. whether the skeptical movement will be inclusive or exclusive. As soon as that happens, a scientist looks to evidence–robust evidence that is repeatedly demonstrable. Guess what–the evidence says that while there may be differences between sexes/genders, the differences are so slight that they cannot be picked out of the noise caused by social convention and environmental influence.

    Science is about evidence; philosophy is calvinball.

  188. says

    @ Stacy

    slow17motion reminds me of jstcr.

    *pop*

    {a small globe starts to glow, dully, in the tardigrade’s brain}
    @ Caine

    Perhaps we need shots.

    I’ve already taken mine:

    * large mango
    * ripe bananna
    * chunk of pineapple
    * pinch cinammon
    * splash of milk
    * two large tots (“shots”) of Myers’ Rum
    Above in blender. Serve with straw and minature umbrella.

  189. ksolway says

    @ a_ray_in_dilbert_space

    how do you explain combovers?

    It’s like an elephant which remains with their dead calf for a period of time, until they accept that the calf is dead. :-)

  190. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The rule of FTB and Atheism+ is that whatever a detractor says is automatically misogyny or racism.

    False, You don’t understand. Whatever a detractor without evidence OPINES is treated with appropriate skepticism. When dissected, usually means misogyny or bigotry underneath. Real evidence can be your in to a discussion.

  191. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It’s like an elephant which remains with their dead calf for a period of time, until they accept that the calf is dead. :-)

    Except it goes on for years irrelevant one.

  192. John Morales says

    ksolway:

    Rubbish. I am a fairly typical man, and as I’ve said, I never even think about clothing.

    Yet you were the one who introduced fashion as a non-guy thing. ;)

    (Typical men introduce fashion discussions into conversations!)

    I don’t spend one minute thinking about it for the reasons I listed above.

    The which boils down to my summation: you have internalised societal expectations, and you would no more wear a dress than you’d wear your underpants as a hat for the reasons listed above — you care what people think about what you wear.

    (Nothing to do with fashion, no sir!)

    The fact is, there is a huge difference between men and women with regard to their interest in fashion – meaning how much time they spend thinking about it, and how much money they spend on it, etc.

    Nope. The fact is that you’ve asserted this without one smidgen of substantiation and maintain it by denying that wearing particular clothing on the basis of how others perceive your so doing is the very embodiment of embracing fashion, the which both men and women (and the rest) do as a matter of course.

    You can’t get around this fact.

    That assertion, you mean.

    (It is no fact, and I hardly have to get around such an illusory phantasm you have concocted)

    You honestly don’t know?

    Heh. Try reading the hovertext I helpfully included.

    (You demonstrate your degree of perceptiveness, though it flatters you not)

    The rule of FTB and Atheism+ is that whatever a detractor says is automatically misogyny or racism.

    Odd that I have never mentioned either term in regards to you.

    Iconoclast, I — or yet another bullshit claim?

    All you have to do is google the research. The fact that you haven’t done it means that you don’t want to know about it.

    I put it to you that you are quite wrong and that all you have to do is google the research. The fact that you haven’t done it means that you don’t want to know about it.

    (Geez, that sauce really is good!)

    That’s why detractors have to qualify everything they say, even though their detractions will themselves be held to be misogyny and racism, in accordance with the rule.

    Detractors, eh? To what detraction do you refer, and how is it you are exempt from that category?

  193. says

    All you have to do is google the research. The fact that you haven’t done it means that you don’t want to know about it.

    Oh FFS, another one. Burden of Proof, cupcake. You’re the one asserting nonsense, it’s up to you to provide proof.

    Did stupid pills hit the water supply where you live? Here’s a little hint for you: you keep talking about subjects you know absolutely nothing about. You have nothing except moronic assertions. At this point, a smart person would shut up, not wanting to prove their idiocy beyond a shadow of doubt.

  194. says

    Tony @643

    NOELPLUM99/JIM/MRA/FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT:
    I’m going to refer to you however the fuck I want to dirtbag.
    Until you unlock the key to your humanity and realize how wrongheaded you’ve been, I’m going to refer to you however I want to, you MRA piece of shit. Go back to the fucking Slymepit!

    Thanks for that Tony

    As i have repeatedly told you, I am not an MRA and your comments are no less hysterical and inaccurate than when MRA’s call me out (as a couple have) for being a ‘closet feminist’.
    I would also point out that I cannot go back to somehwere i haven’t come from. But then given that you say in comment #647

    For some reason, the regulars at Pharyngula don’t venture to the Slymepit…

    …you wouldn’t be aware of that, would you? you are seemingly an expert on the Slymepit place even though you know nothing about it – remind me to come to you for travel advice when |i am next looking to go on holiday: you can tell me all about the places you have never been to and know fuck all about.

    And wrt the general tone of your comments and expecially the hysterial comment #649, I really think you should have a look at this link (****WARNING*** this link will take you OUTSIDE of FtB, scary I know)

    http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Anger_how_it_affects_people

    Yours,
    Jim.

  195. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    You disgusting liar, bishoptakesknight. That wasn’t a definition of privilege, you trolling weasel! Tim Wise is talking about white privilege. He’s talking about the power it gives to white people, from within it. You must be a stupid liar or incapable of parsing even small chunks of English speech.

    You have lied. Will you retract that quote you attributed to Tim Wise? Will you admit that he never said anything of the sort in the way you implied he did in order to make your argument? Will you apologise?

    If you do not, you are utterly beneath contempt. I can only hope you are banned for being an insipid liar, intellectually bankrupt and disgusting. If it even matters, I am incensed by this lie of yours. I will not tolerate you if you do not retract the quote and apologise.

    To provide context, Tim Wise is talking about American people or recent immigrants to America who have been forced into labour, forcibly deported or otherwise denied their full rights, specifically uprooted from their homes, because they are not white. In closing this section of his talk he says, in regards to people who have experienced being uprooted and in specific in regards to white privilege, and I quote him verbatim:

    The folks who don’t know are the folks who write copy for CNN and the folks who do know don’t write copy for CNN and that’s the difference. You see, White Privilege: the privilege to define reality for everybody and expect your definition of it to stick, because you got the power to make it stick.

    I hate liars, bishoptakesknight. Fix your mistake.

    bishoptakesknight @ #408

    “privilege: the power to define reality for everybody, and expect your definition to stick.”_ Tim Wise
    This is the exact delusion most of you folks are living in.

    1. Assert patriarchy, privilege, and inherited white power is true.
    2. Back it up with stats that purposefully ignore the other side of the argument.
    3. Bash everyone who doesn’t fall in line.
    4. Claim victory on the grounds of superior morality.

    You now have the privilege to instantly be right about anything related to gender, sex, or sexuality.
    Just like religious people.
    Some people are born privileged, but they are not all white, they are not all male, and there is certainly no conspiracy to keep those people from failing. All, while making sure no one else succeeds.

    ARGH! LIAR!

    And you’re stupid!

    (bolding added)

  196. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    SGBM ॐ @ 525

    I don’t know why anyone was surprised that Tim Wise would say that. It’s a fine definition of privilege.

    Because, he didn’t fuck say it! It’s a damned, dirty lie.

    Where bishoptakesknight is full of shit, of course, is in failing to notice that we don’t have that power.

    No. It’s not a failure to notice, it’s a failure to comprehend spoken English or to lie maliciously in order to forward a fallacious argument.

    It wasn’t a definition of white privilege at all, let alone of privilege. It is a description of the power of privilege from within it.

    (I’m not angry at you, I’m just incredibly angry.)

  197. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I am not an MRA

    So say all the MRA fuckwits. Your words and attitude say otherwise. You need to convince us by changing your words and attitude.

    I really think you should have a look at this link

    You should heed the advice to fuck off. You have nothing cogent to say, and say it badly in any case. All you do is make us laugh and point.

  198. thepint says

    @ theophontes (坏蛋) #651

    You certainly hit the ground running. Welcome back.

    Awww shucks… How could I ignore this one? Another Name in skepticism choosing to double down on massive privilege-fail instead of acknowledging what could have been a simple “Oops, that was a rather thoughtless and not skeptical comment wasn’t it? Will try not to do that again” learning moment (and it’s a twofer of sexism AND racism, given Shermer’s follow up comment, oof!!), triggering a thread of similar massive privilege fail, Special Snowflakism AND Gatekeepers of Real Geekdom to boot.

    It’s like Idiot Whack-a-Mole in here and I’ve had a VERY. BAD. Week. Although I may not be able to keep up as much because as is typical, the thread’s progressed like lightning and I’m still playing catch up, nice to see so little’s changed and everyone’s fangs are still extra sniny.

  199. says

    @725 Nerd

    So say all the MRA fuckwits. Your words and attitude say otherwise. You need to convince us by changing your words and attitude.

    I don’t need to because you don’t really believe what you are saying. You are simply throwing mud around because it is all you know.
    Maybe once you were decent little hobbit but your years of existence down here in FtB, never seeing the light of day, have twisted you into something akin to Gollum.

    Jim.

  200. thepint says

    slow17motion #652

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

    Translation: It wasn’t a problem for me, therefore it shouldn’t be a problem for anyone. Jebus, asshole, where’s your empathy? You do realize that other people have different experiences and that just because they may have had a harder time coming out as gay (and guess what, not everyone even has the luxury of coming out as gay, even, considering there are parts of this country where doing so can get you DEAD), it doesn’t make them weaker or less than you. YOU are not the norm against which all others are measured, Snowflake. If anyone needs to grow up and have their ego taken down several sizes here, it’s you.

    Rey Fox #659

    I mean, here I was thinking that being a geek meant being unashamedly enthusiastic about some body of knowledge. I guess what it really means is engaging in preening tribalistic behavior that would shame a football fan.

    Yeah, I was thinking of linking slow17motion to Scalzi’s rather excellent piece on “Who Gets to Be a Geek” piece (answer: Anyone who damn well pleases!) but figured I’d be wasting my breath. Geeks like *that* are who give the rest of us a fucking bad name, but at least I’d never dream of denying him the label of “geek” if he feels that he is one.

    Again, slow17motion #664

    Lastly, you mention my privilege? How exactly to you know that I experience said privilege? Are you a mind reader? That knife cuts both ways….I’m a success because I chose to be.

    Oh FFS. You still clearly don’t understand how privilege works – privilege doesn’t guarantee you success, but it sure as hell stacks the game differently for you than others when you have it, and in such a way that you often don’t realize that you’re playing with different rules than others in the first place that makes your settings less difficult in some areas because of said privileges, because the game is DEFAULTED TO BE EASIER FOR YOU. You’re a geek, you should know that playing a game on the easiest setting =/= beating the game automatically, but it does mean you’re going to have a slightly easier time of it than someone playing a game with different difficulty settings than you.

    And no one’s really a “success because they chose to be” unless they have the ability to bend reality their will because one’s level of success depends not only on one’s will, intelligence and abilities, it also depends on circumstances outside one’s control – and sometimes things happen to cause failure no matter how hard you try and how hard and well-put together your effort is. That’s reality, too.

  201. says

    No movers or shakers of social justice ever got anything across by complaining.

    That’s the opposite of true.

    Everyone faces obstacles and if you’re gay, grow a thicker skin because you’re gonna need it. …People respect a backbone, not a wimp….

    I don’t remember ever reading about Martin Luther King’s “I Had A Good Cry” speech.

    “The Burdens of Martyrdom”:

    King suffered desperate stretches of depression that sometimes alarmed his closest aides and friends. He fought valiantly to maintain sanity and focus in the midst of the surrounding turmoil. One of his top aides wanted him to consult a psychiatrist because of his steep descent into the doldrums. The sleeping pills he got from a physician friend stopped working. His vacations rarely allowed him to escape his troubles and pressures. And the somber tones of his voice evoked the nightmares that stalked him.

  202. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    Slow17motion:
    Now you’re victim blaming?
    How are you so unable to grasp the difficulties queers across the world-not just the U.S.-face?
    Why do you minimize their pain and sufferring?
    How can you be so ignorant of the real struggles queers in the U.S.- face?
    Why do you act as if your personal experience of coming out was the same as other queers?
    Why do you assume I am speaking on my behalf? I haven’t mentioned any of my experiences. I am talking about what queers around the world go through.
    The toxic atmosphere surrounding homosexuality-of which denying the reality of how many queers have struggled-helped contribute to Matthew Sheppard’s death. His killers didn’t grow up in isolation. They learned to hate from the culture around them. Everytime you tell a gay person to grow thicker skin, or tell us “it’s not that bad”, you contribute to the culture of oppression. Hell, your lack of empathy is a direct result of cultural influence. Now you are feeding back the crap you’ve learned.
    Take some time to listen to the experiences of queers. Read articles from around the world. Stop thinking your experiences are representative of anyone but yourself.

  203. omnicrom says

    Oh yes wise and knowledgeable Noelplum. Show us the light for we have strayed from the true path of not getting upset at sexist comments and stupid annoying trolls. Show us the way forward, lead us to the truth that sexism is somehow magically not a real problem if we say it isn’t!

  204. slow17motion says

    Jadehawk, you simply evaded my question. I asked what forms of masculinity wouldn’t be toxic. I was asking for a specific example.

    Come to your state? What would that be, the state of confusion? State sodomy laws have all been overturned. The federal government allows for personal protections in the workforce. People who do discriminate, such as B&B’s, are constantly forking over fistfuls of cash settlements.

    Gay marriage is the one fundamental right gay men and women lack. Other than that, there is no sponsored state discrimination against gay men and women. We have the same rights, obstacles, and oppurtunities as everyone else. Culturally we may be less accepted, but that was not the conversation I was having.

  205. slow17motion says

    Tony, I have said already that I’m not talking about gays all over the world. I am talking about the places where the majority of the people on these boards are from… A little hint: Not Uganda.

    I don’t need to ask queers, I’ve met dozens–I actually am one.

    The only thing that contributed to Shepard’s death were the two dudes who killed him.

  206. Anthony K says

    The only thing that contributed to Shepard’s death were the two dudes who killed him.

    Well, that’s just an abjectly stupid statement.

  207. says

    Gay marriage is the one fundamental right gay men and women lack. Other than that, there is no sponsored state discrimination against gay men and women.

    Because states that ban adoption by same sex couples don’t count? The failure of ENDA to pass and the many states that don’t offer state-level employment protection don’t count? The FDA sponsored ban on queer men donating blood doesn’t count? The Fair Housing Act not applying to LGBT people doesn’t count?

    And obviously the problems of trans* people don’t matter in your world.

  208. Anthony K says

    And Noelplum99, I asked you to do one thing to demonstrate you’re acting in good faith. You didn’t.

  209. says

    Look, folks, LGBT people can be fired from their jobs for their orientation or gender presentation, they can be denied housing, the fucking FDA considers gay and bi men dirty disease vectors, you can’t adopt kids with your same sex partner, trans* people are banned from the military, but its not like we’re discriminated against in the US or anything.

  210. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    there is no human behaviour unique to one sex – quote-mine of me

    Ok, so you went down the misrepresentation route Nick. – noelplum99

    Stone me, but you’re stupid. I wasn’t asserting that you had claimed there were human behaviours unique to one sex, as should be obvious from the fact that the words before your quote-mine noted that there are some such behaviours, e.g. breast-feeding. I was making an implicit contrast with other mammalian species, in most of which there are manysuch behaviours.

  211. Bill Openthalt says

    @9, Eric

    Its simply: social opposition to conscious and overt bias. Speak up when you see it; apologize when you do it.

    And who determines when you “do it”? No-one is free from bias, we all have our unconscious reality filters, so that what I observe is not the same as what you observe.

    Who determines whether an utterance is sexist? If I say something, and you think it is sexist, what makes your opinion more valuable than mine? The fact you call yourself a feminist? The fact you get a lot of people to confirm your opinion?

  212. Anthony K says

    If I say something, and you think it is sexist, what makes your opinion more valuable than mine? The fact you call yourself a feminist? The fact you get a lot of people to confirm your opinion?

    Is it your contention that the existence and identification of social processes are completely subjective? Is that the fucking idiotic route you want to take?

  213. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    slow17motion, the US is not the only country in the world. A good deal of the posters here are not American. I’m not American and I know, trivially, that,

    Gay marriage is the one fundamental right gay men and women lack. Other than that, there is no sponsored state discrimination against gay men and women. We have the same rights, obstacles, and oppurtunities as everyone else.

    those statements are not true across the US. You’re either quite unaware of the reality of oppression faced by American queers or you’re being disingenuous (and that’s a charitable description of your apparent ignorance).

  214. says

    Anthony @737

    I answered your question. how was my reply not ‘in good faith’?

    Nick @739

    I was making an implicit contrast with other mammalian species, in most of which there are manysuch behaviours.

    So what were you hoping to prove with that? Is your claim that it is only in these behaviours that are entirely unique to one sex that innate predisposition plays any role? If that IS your claim then we can discuss that; if that is not your claim then you have added nothing other than a vehicle to launch your ad-hominem put downs.

    Jim

  215. says

    Jadehawk, you simply evaded my question. I asked what forms of masculinity wouldn’t be toxic. I was asking for a specific example.

    I didn’t evade your question, I answered it. Not my fault you lack the brainpower to imagine specific examples. I should have known though, given that you don’t even consider your own masculinity to be one.

    But fine, if you need an example: *points at Anthony K*

    Other than that, there is no sponsored state discrimination against gay men and women.

    except for the part where there aren’t any kinds of worker protections in this state, and that the law expressly permits discrimination against gay people wanting to adopt (hell, there are barely any protections for gay parents even to keep the children they already have; sexual identity has until a few years ago been used to deny gay parents custody in divorce cases)

    People who do discriminate, such as B&B’s, are constantly forking over fistfuls of cash settlements.

    not here they aren’t. ENDA never passed, and there are no state-protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation here

  216. Anthony K says

    I answered your question. how was my reply not ‘in good faith’?

    I wrote, “Show us how you’d deal with that.” Not tell us. Actually do it, and demonstrate that your method is more successful.

    You didn’t do that.

    Was I not clear enough for you?

  217. bargearse says

    The only thing that contributed to Shepard’s death were the two dudes who killed him.

    hmm, maybe an analogy about POC and lynching….nah, too easy. But really, you’re actually going to run with that claim?

  218. says

    Anthony,
    Please clarify something. Was the article to which you were referring, the subject of your remark, Shermer’s comment ‘it’s a guy thing’ or had I misunderstood what you were asking me?

  219. says

    Anthony,
    I have just reread your comment and i think i understand what you want me to do. You want me to address Ahmetduran directly?
    Is that right?
    If that is so, just reply in the affirmative and i will do so!

    Jim

  220. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    slow 17 motion :
    so the men hat killed Matthew Shepard developed their anti gay views completely on their own with no influence from outside culture?

  221. Anthony K says

    What I’m asking you to do, Noelplum99, is to take your turn at arguing with some of the individuals we argue with.In this case, ahmetduran.

    Even in the other thread in which he shat all over with unsupported assumptions, you steadfastly refused to engage with him, instead sitting on the sidelines, taking swipes at Pharyngula and regular Pharyngula commenters. It’s rather obvious how often you engage in this sort of sniping when the opportunity to demonstrate your superior skill is right in front of you, clogging up the thread.

    As I said, I believe you’re sincere. I also believe you’re self-delusional, and the above is how you protect that delusion.

    If you really have a better method of communication, picked up from all your travels around the net, then for fuck’s sake, let’s see it in action.

  222. says

    @Ahmetduran,
    I have been asked to address your claim “How can it be sexist if what he said is true ?” with reference to Shermer’s ‘It’s a guy thing’ comment.

    I would ask you to consider that Shermer’s comment can either be taken as a descriptive or normative statement and these both need to be considered seperately.

    Taken as a descriptive statement then I would concur with you that the idea that it is ‘sexist’ if true is slightly absurd. It is qualitatively no different to answering the question ‘why are the men at conference hairier than the women at conference?’ with the retort ‘men are just generally hairier’ (note: irrespective of the factors at play such as innate hairiness and different average depilatory practices between the sexes)

    However, taken as a normative statement things are a bit more complex and I would contend that you are wrong.
    I propose that normative statements generally do not hold truth value (what would it even mean to say ‘men should be hairier than women’?) outside of arbitrarily constructed frameworks (such as defining morality to have some arbitrarily defined goal, as Harris did recently). So in this context your question ‘what if it is true?’ is rendered irrelevant because it wouldn’t be an issue of truth or falsehood, but rather a case of Shermer saying that this is how he would like the world to be. In that instance we could certainly view his comment is sexist, and by most normal definitions of the word it most certainly would be.

    Jim

  223. Pteryxx says

    so the men hat killed Matthew Shepard developed their anti gay views completely on their own with no influence from outside culture?

    Yep… just like the Montreal Massacre had nothing to do with feminism or misogyny whatsoever, except when MRAs valorize it. Only evil feminist ideas have consequences.

    …Come to think of it, this sounds exactly like Libby Anne’s recent takedown of rape culture among clergy… it’s the women’s or children’s fault for being temptresses, not the fault of the innocent priests induced to rape them.

    Toxic masculinity: anything bad they do is somebody else’s fault.

  224. says

    Anthony @751

    Perhaps now you may like to demonstrate to me that you are acting in good faith and have a word with Nerd for the responses he has left me?

    case in point, his response at #562 to my reply to you at #460

    jim

  225. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If you really have a better method of communication, picked up from all your travels around the net, then for fuck’s sake, let’s see it in action.

    Exactly my point from day one. But so far, nothing, zip, zero, nada, nil, empty set.

  226. slow17motion says

    What a shocker, Jadehawk, you once again managed to avoid my question. I’m not exactly sure what you mean by “points to Anthony K”… That’s not an example of a non-toxic masculinity–It’s a man… However, as so many of you have pointed out, what we consider masculine and what be bilogicially define as men do not have to necessarily coincide. What masculine behavior, what action does he perform, that is an example of non-toxic masculinity?

    It really shouldn’t be that hard. I can actually think of hundreds of examples–my contention was that YOU could not. If you did, I wonder how long it would take for the other fools here to put the “sexist” hat upon your little head…

    First of all, why are you not mentioning the state? Did I miss something?

    Second of all, workers are guaranteed all sorts of protections… You mean protections that are designed specifically to protect gay individuals–however, gay individuals are still afforded the protections provided for everyone else.

    I’m sure that you read that it’s still legal to fire someone because he or she is gay (in several states). That’s an unfortunate reality–however, it is also technically legal for firing someone for halitosis. Either way, you’re probably going to get compenstation and unemployment because without a paper trail and a well-documented reason for termination it’s not so easy for businesses to let people go. Keep in mind that when hiring an individual there is no way to tell (unless the idiot hiring you mentions it) whether or not that person decides to go with another candidate because someone is flamboyantly gay.

    ENDA, as wonderful as something like that might be, would benefit trans individuals much more than homosexual individuals. I would argue that being a trannie is far more difficult in our society than being homosexual. One of my good friends (who I met as a heterosexual man) is now a lesbian. I’ve seen firsthand the kind of BS she endures on a daily basis. (One time we were walking and some dudes yelled “FAG!” at her. We kind of laughed–at the time that would have actually been a better description for me than for her. I digress.)

    Adoption agencies discriminate against many individuals: atheists, single parents (especially single men), trans individuals, homosexual individuals… This is a much larger issue than for just homosexuals. Advice: Find the right adoption agency.

    I must also point out that none of what you discussed is actually STATE SPONSORED. The lack of intervention by the state does not imply direct sponsorship. I mentioned previously that discrimination still happens in the workplace. The biggest exception to this IS the adoption issue. There are a few states (10 or less I believe) where adoption is regulated based on marital status (and even fewer where adoption to homosexual couples is prohibited). This discriminates against single men, single women, and gays especially (because they have no option to marry). I will concede that in these few states, that is a STATE SPONSORED discrimination–but it really goes back to DOMA… Which I’ve already pointed out is the single biggest state sponsored way of discriminating against homosexuals.

    All of this is rather unfortunate. I understand that homosexuals have complaints. However, in this country they have oppurtunity. I’m not saying that discrimination doesn’t happen. I NEVER said that. I said to stop being such a big, whining crybaby about it. Nobody respects you for being a wimp. Simple as that.

  227. Anthony K says

    Thanks, noelplum99.

    Feel free to take on any others that the regulars are arguing against. You can be part of changing Pharyngula’s culture, but it’s going to be through participating, rather than finger-wagging.

  228. Anthony K says

    Perhaps now you may like to demonstrate to me that you are acting in good faith and have a word with Nerd for the responses he has left me?

    Nerd, would you stand down a bit and let Noelplum99 have some room to breathe?

    Exactly my point from day one. But so far, nothing, zip, zero, nada, nil, empty set.

    Now that Noelplum99 is clear on what we’re wanting to see from him, let’s give him the chance to show it.

  229. slow17motion says

    And to the above poster who said not everyone here is American:

    No shit. I came here to chat with noelplum99.

    I’m well aware.

    However, most of the people who show up at a conference with Ophelia Benson would be American. Because, you know, she’s American and many of these conferences are in America. This forum is also written in English. Most English speakers are found in Canada, the US, England, Australia, a few other countries in Europe, South Africa, and Nigeria. Although Nigeria is considered to be a developing country, it’s still one of the wealthiest African countries.

    What is the point of this? Take a look at the countries I’ve mentioned–most are all pretty nice places for gays to live–EXCEPT NIGERIA! (Unless you like a good stoning.) Suuure, there are English speakers in other places, but let’s not kid ourselves. The VAST majority of people here are from some pretty nice places where discrimination is not quite so evident (not when compared to Nigeria!!!)…

    I’d guess the vast majority of you are from Canada, the US, and England. Besides I am only talking about America here anyway–as I’ve mentioned multiple times.

  230. slow17motion says

    Tony, when you mentioned the thing about the culture being responsible for the guys’ views of Matthew Shepard–

    No, I don’t think that they developed their ideas about gays on their own.

    However, I don’t think that gay men “minimizing” the struggles of other gay men had anything to do with it–which is what I was accused of doing and apparently how I contributed to Matthew Shepard’s death.

    Honestly, I don’t support a culture that ignores the gay man’s plight. Actually, it’s much the opposite. What I am advocating is that people, in general, stop being such wincing little babies about everything. This whole debacle spawned because I accused the people on this forum of being whiners. My solution is to acknowledge injustice, argue against it, and do the best that you can with what you have until the movement gains more ground.

    It seems to me the solution of many of the people on this forum is to lie down on their backs and kick their legs up in the air. Calling everyone that disagrees with you homophobic or sexist is not forwarding your cause–it’s actually harming it.

  231. says

    Anthony @759

    Thanks for your response

    Feel free to take on any others that the regulars are arguing against.

    I would point out that almost every time i post at FtB it has not been to criticise a commenter but to comment on the original blog (including positive comments, and i can link you some if you request). Inasmuch as i end up arguing with commenters that is purely as a result of them jumping on me with their responses to me, to which i respond.
    You are quite correct that I never tackled Ahmet’s contribution, but then I didn’t tackle anyone’s contribution other than PZ Myers (my original comment is #359 if you want to go and look). If I now start going round addressing everything I disagree with I really would then have become a troll.
    what i would also add is that, it seems, in general i am going to be on the opposite side of the argument to yourself and most of the regulars. I am fine with that but what I don’t understand is why you equate that with not acting in good faith? Even if I HAD entirely agreed with Ahmet’s comment, as long as I really did agree and wasn’t just pretending to for the purposes of trolling then where would the issue of bad faith come in?

    Really, I am not saying ‘oh, let’s all be friends and have a group hug’, just have a little bit more civility, on all sides, and discuss the bones of contention rather than throwing them at each other.

    Jim.

  232. slow17motion says

    Noelplum99:

    Seriously? I love watching Anthony K direct his horde of FTB’ers and command them as to how to conduct themselves–while also “schooling” you on how to act and what he wants to “see from you”… Holy hell, this forum can be really retarded.

    What he really wants to see: You becoming a part of the collective. He wants you to argue with the people he argues with–and for WHAT? As adults we are capable of picking who we want to argue with and what posts we respond to.

    Hey, Anthony K, you’re not anybody’s mommy here. Nobody gives two shits what you want to “see” from someone. Although–I did find your “DOWN MINION” treatment of Nerd to be humorous, it was also pretty hilariously stupid.

    You’re the Blair Waldorf of FTB. Yeah, that was a Gossip Girl reference. Deal with it.

  233. says

    hat’s not an example of a non-toxic masculinity–It’s a man

    I’m just going to let that stand there, for everyone’s amusement

    I can actually think of hundreds of examplesalright, then there’s no problem. we both know there are fmasculinities that aren’t toxic (most of the stuff you listed above for example, which is why it wasn’t relevant to a discussion of toxic masculinities). what’s your problem then?

    , gay individuals are still afforded the protections provided for everyone else.

    ENDA didn’t pass. Over here, I can’t be fired/kicked out of a club or sports team/ denied housing/etc. for who I am, but you could.

    Adoption agencies discriminate against many individuals: atheists, single parents (especially single men), trans individuals, homosexual individuals…

    one set axis of oppression doesn’t invalidate another; but thanks for admitting I was right (I’m sure you didn’t mean to)

    Advice: Find the right adoption agency.

    lol. such “right” adoption agencies exist probably across the Canadian border, and otherwise some 2 days drive away. Not here. But hey, that’s apparently not discrimination. lol.

    I must also point out that none of what you discussed is actually STATE SPONSORED.

    explicitly allowing discrimination is precisely that, especially when some of these agencies receive public funds.

    The lack of intervention by the state does not imply direct sponsorship.

    the money they receive does. and sorry to burst your bubble, but extending protection to some people but not others is a form of state sponsorship of discrimination.

    ENDA, as wonderful as something like that might be, would benefit trans individuals much more than homosexual individuals.

    one axis of oppression does not invalidate another. and you’re once again confirming my point, probably again not on purpose.

    I would argue that being a trannie is

    your constant use of slurs has been duly noted.

  234. says

    oops, blockquote fail

    I can actually think of hundreds of examples

    alright, then there’s no problem. we both know there are fmasculinities that aren’t toxic (most of the stuff you listed above for example, which is why it wasn’t relevant to a discussion of toxic masculinities). what’s your problem then?

  235. says

    slow17motion @765

    His request is a little bit unreasonable imo. I wouldn’t expect him to jump over every single misrepresentation and personal attack the house trolls come out with.
    I am always happy to give my opinion on anything, if asked, but I am no more about to come on Pharyngula looking for people who are disagreeing with Myers to respond to when I don’t come here looking for those who agree with him to respond to!

    Jim.

  236. Anthony K says

    I love watching Anthony K direct his horde of FTB’ers and command them as to how to conduct themselves

    Hey, fuckface: read what you write much?

    What I am advocating is that people, in general, stop being such wincing little babies about everything.

    Fuck you, you fucking dumbass. Don’t tell people what to do. You’re nobody’s mommy.

  237. says

    It seems to me the solution of many of the people on this forum is to lie down on their backs and kick their legs up in the air.

    your silly and false assumptions are not actually a valid argument

  238. Anthony K says

    Seriously? I love watching Anthony K direct his horde of FTB’ers and command them as to how to conduct themselves–while also “schooling” you on how to act and what he wants to “see from you”… Holy hell, this forum can be really retarded.

    What he really wants to see: You becoming a part of the collective. He wants you to argue with the people he argues with–and for WHAT? As adults we are capable of picking who we want to argue with and what posts we respond to.

    Hey, Anthony K, you’re not anybody’s mommy here. Nobody gives two shits what you want to “see” from someone. Although–I did find your “DOWN MINION” treatment of Nerd to be humorous, it was also pretty hilariously stupid.

    You’re the Blair Waldorf of FTB. Yeah, that was a Gossip Girl reference. Deal with it.

    I was perfectly civil in my responses to Noelplum99. And this is the response.

    Let’s see you give slow17motion your stern talking to, Noelplum99.

  239. Anthony K says

    Really, I am not saying ‘oh, let’s all be friends and have a group hug’, just have a little bit more civility, on all sides, and discuss the bones of contention rather than throwing them at each other.

    slow17motion, did you read this?

  240. consciousness razor says

    No, I don’t think that they developed their ideas about gays on their own.

    So you think this is false:

    The only thing that contributed to Shepard’s death were the two dudes who killed him.

    So why did you say something false?

    Honestly, I don’t support a culture that ignores the gay man’s plight.

    Your comments show that’s not the case. Of course, they also show you deny it, that generally you’re a stupid asshole, and a few other things.

    This whole debacle spawned because I accused the people on this forum of being whiners.

    You said this:

    As far as the “patriarchal definitions of masculinity”–yeah, it’s tough being a boy that doesn’t fit in with the rest of the boys. Ah, well, fuckin’ cry about it, you faggot.

    That is not “being whiners” but being a “faggot,” as if that were a bad thing which you could accuse someone of.

    Calling everyone that disagrees with you homophobic or sexist is not forwarding your cause–it’s actually harming it.

    Ah, the “everyone that disagrees with you” gambit. How clever.

  241. Anthony K says

    It IS so important that we continue to struggle toward equality, but the way we do that is not to become hypersensitive and censor our fucking JOKES because, oops, we might offend somebody! We actually need to LISTEN to each other’s ideas and have rational conversations.

    Mommy, what time is dinner?

    In actuality I was saying that people should CONSIDER other arguments before dismissing them offhand as sexist or some other nonsense.

    Mommy, can I go out and play with my friends?

    Okay, listen, NerdOfAnnoyingHandles–this is a forum. It is not a dissertation. Presenting ideas to be bandied about does not require that you have a works cited at the end of your post

    Mommy, my tooth hurts.

    (See guys, I actually watch stuff before commenting on it! Take note!)

    Mommy, do I hafta go to bed early tonight?

  242. Anthony K says

    Really, I am not saying ‘oh, let’s all be friends and have a group hug’, just have a little bit more civility, on all sides, and discuss the bones of contention rather than throwing them at each other.

    Again, slow17motion, did you read this?

    It’s by your favourite, about whom you said “People like Jim are constantly posting new points, coming up with more evidence”.You know, the guy who “seems like a rational guy to [you]“?

    You gonna listen to him?

  243. Anthony K says

    Noelplum99, you have anything you specifically want to say to slow17motion about his lack of civility?

  244. ezekiel says

    Antony K: Fuck you, you fucking dumbass. Don’t tell people what to do. You’re nobody’s mommy.

    Yes, Noelplum99… talk to slow17motion about his lack of civility.

  245. slow17motion says

    JadeBLOCK:

    You’ve been drinking the GLAAD juice. Tranny isn’t always a slur–it can be used as a term of endearment. Kind of like queer or queen.

    Like I’ve mentioned, you’re a very sensitive lot.

    I never said that the fact that ENDA was better for trans somehow made it less helpful to gays. I was simply saying it wasn’t as big a problem for gays.

    One could argue that extending special protections is also a form of state sponsored discrimination under your definition of state sponsored discrimination–hence the argument over affirmitive action. My argument is that unless the state specifically passes a discriminating bill (DOMA) then it is not state sponsored. Just my opinion.

    65,000 kids have been adopted by gays. Over a quarter of a million live in gay homes. Find the right agency.

    Still not seeing any specific examples of non-toxic masculinities. This is fun…

    Anthony WK:

    Bustin’ out the F-bombs, bud! Hit a nerve? Wait, let me take a cue from Jade: Your constant use of obscenities is noted.

    I’m nobody’s mommy–but I’d be happy to be your daddy.

    Why would anybody be giving anyone a stern talking to on an internet forum? That’s idiotic.

    First of all, my response was meant for NP99, not you. Second of all, if you look at my post–the tone might be a bit aggressive, but I never directly attacked anybody. I DID say the forum was retarded and that people don’t “give two shits” about what you want to “see from them”… However, I think your condescending attitude is more offensive.

  246. Anthony K says

    Yes, Noelplum99… talk to slow17motion about his lack of civility.

    Is this the game you want to play? Nobody can say anything to anyone on any issue as long as there is a more pressing issue elsewhere?

    Then lemme clue the atheists in: give up. Religion is far from the most pressing issue facing people of the world. Y’all can just fucking step down.

    (Also, look up tu quoque sometime.)

  247. Josh, Exasperated SpokesGay says

    slowmotion17, Tony had the right of you. You’re a fucking piece of shit self-centered asshole lacking anything approaching empathy. Fuck you. Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you.

  248. consciousness razor says

    Second of all, if you look at my post–the tone might be a bit aggressive, but I never directly attacked anybody.

    No? Is saying “Ah, well, fuckin’ cry about it, you faggot” not direct enough?

    I DID say the forum was retarded

    Is this not a direct attack on people with mental disabilities? If it’s indirect, why is that somehow better?

  249. Anthony K says

    Bustin’ out the F-bombs, bud! Hit a nerve?

    There’s nothing dumber than a hack psychologist on the net.

    First of all, my response was meant for NP99, not you.

    I thought you were some kind of geek. Don’t you know how internet fora work, fuckface?

    However, I think your condescending attitude is more offensive.

    Oh, get off the ground and grow a fucking spine, you whiny fucking crybaby.

  250. Anthony K says

    No? Is saying “Ah, well, fuckin’ cry about it, you faggot” not direct enough?

    Oh, I’m sure glass17house was just joking.

  251. slow17motion says

    Anthony K is upset. Remember that visual of an FTB’er lying on his/her back and flailing his/her legs like a big crying baby… This is actually what I was talking about.

    Josh–how am I self-centered? I’ve gifted you all with my presence. That in itself must demonstrate what a giving individual I truly am.

  252. Anthony K says

    Remember that visual of an FTB’er lying on his/her back and flailing his/her legs like a big crying baby

    Fuck, but you are a stupid piece of shit. I’m joking! It’s all in fun when I note that you’re a hypocritical, thin-skinned fuckface moron.

    Aren’t you laughing with me, fuckfaced dumbshit?

  253. consciousness razor says

    Anthony K is upset.

    Shouldn’t he be?

    Remember that visual of an FTB’er lying on his/her back and flailing his/her legs like a big crying baby… This is actually what I was talking about.

    Why should we care about figments of your imagination?

  254. says

    Just my opinion.

    the excuse of idiots everywhere

    Tranny isn’t always a slur

    yeah, I’m just going to not take a cis dude’s word for that, when my trans friennds have said otherwise. tranny is a reclaimed slur (exactly like queer, in fact)

  255. vaiyt says

    And boo hoo. Coming out and being gay is hard. Need a tissue? Grow up.

    Meanwhile, the countless queers and trans*people who died so you could have a relatively safe environment to be a total asshat ARE ROLLING IN THEIR GRAVES.

  256. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nerd, would you stand down a bit and let Noelplum99 have some room to breathe?

    *Snicker* I have a report to finish, but I’ll check in to see how successful Jim is with xis superior powers of unpersuation.

  257. slow17motion says

    consciousness,

    Your quote of me using the word “faggot” completely misrepresents the tone of that post and the irony that was intended behind the quote. I identified as gay on this forum already.

    I WAS joking. It WAS obvious. Sorry that you missed it.

    How is calling this forum retarded a direct attack on people with disabilities? If I called them retarded it might be an attack on people with mental disabilities–then again it probably wouldn’t matter because they’d be so retarded that they wouldn’t understand it! Ah, I crack myself up.

    Tony K:

    Doesn’t take a psych degree to tell that when a person responds with a bunch of F-bombs–that individual is not a happy camper.

    Wait! You can read posts that I intend for other people!? I HAD NO IDEA!!!

    Actually, I know very well how the internet works. And how forums work! The reason I pointed out that my response was meant for NP99 was so that you’d see that I was not directly attacking you. It was my way of saying, “Chill out, man.”

    By the way, glass17house isn’t even remotely funny.

    If you took the time to notice, I at least rhyme or alter the names in a way that actually pays tribute to the original name. Simply maintaining the 17 is not enough to make it funny or clever.

    Anthony WK is funny.
    Tony K is funny.
    Anthony “Special” K is funny, considering that we’ve been addressing retards–and you are kind of “special”… Plus, it’s a breakfast cereal and slang for Ketamine. I thought about that nickname next.

  258. Anthony K says

    By the way, glass17house isn’t even remotely funny.

    No, just an accurate statement about the kind of person you are.

  259. says

    First of all, my response was meant for NP99, not you.

    this is not your private chatroom. you post where others can respond, they will. if you don’t like that, take it to e-mail

  260. slow17motion says

    Jadey:

    Yes, sorry, tranny is a RECLAIMED slur. I apologize. Saying it isn’t a “slur” isn’t entirely inaccurate. However, since it is RECLAIMED (like queer), it’s not really offensive, now is it? Not when it’s being used with oodles of love–and I assure you it was.

    Joshy:

    I know what nouns and verbs are, my irritating little friend. But, much like punctuation, I sometimes ignore proper grammar since we’re on a forum. Similar to the way you ignored placing a comma before the word “shithead”–I ignore some rules of grammar, punctuation, and capitalization because it’s an internet forum. Half of the time I’m typing on my phone with an itty bitty screen.

    Whatever, the last resort of any loser on the internet with nothing interesting to say is to start playing grammar police.

    PS I have a MA in English, a BA in lit studites, and a BS in adolescent education w/ and English concentrate. I DO know verbs and nouns.

    Vaiyt–ehm Vaiyty?:

    I assure you that they’re not doing anything in their graves aside from decomposing.

    Tony:

    Stop looking for Jim to step in on your behalf. It’s needy. Men don’t like it when other guys act so desperately needy. Besides, Jim is my man and I’ll fight you for him if I have to…

  261. slow17motion says

    Vaiyt:

    I’m gay. If I were to say something in that vein–which I wouldn’t–I’d say it more like this:

    “Homophobia is over! Let’s all oil up, strap on some singlets, and wrestle in the streets!”

  262. slow17motion says

    Jaywalk:

    Sorry I meant to say:

    Saying it isn’t a “slur” isn’t entirely ACCURATE.

    Also, I addressed the thing about my comment being directed to NP99 earlier.

  263. Pteryxx says

    How is calling this forum retarded a direct attack on people with disabilities?

    The same way ‘eww, that’s so gay’ is a direct slur against people who are gay.

  264. slow17motion says

    Ah, Josh, if only I could… I’m simply not that bendy.

    Vaiyt, snowflakes don’t roar.

  265. says

    However, since it is RECLAIMED (like queer), it’s not really offensive, now is it?

    you have no fucking clue what you’re talking about. a reclaimed slur is still a slur, and still functions like that when used down-gradient. unless you’re trans, or using it in a circle of trans friends who’ve given you permission to use it, it is still pissing donw the power gradient, and therefore functions as a slur.

  266. Anthony K says

    Just so we can move this discussion forward, can we all acknowledge that slow17motion is the gayest and manliest man ever?

    Speaking of whiny desperation for validation…

  267. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    I’m having a hard time getting past this

    Go lick your own asshole you belligerent fuck.

    my assistant is wondering what all the snickering is in my office

  268. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    *Peeks in looking for evidence of Jim’s superior powers of unpersuation. Finds what was expected, nothing.*

  269. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    So what were you hoping to prove with that? Is your claim that it is only in these behaviours that are entirely unique to one sex that innate predisposition plays any role? – noelplum

    No, that is not my claim. If it were my claim, I would have claimed it. If you were actually capable of reading for comprehension, you would know exactly what my contention was in that specific response to you. Here, let me repeat it:

    the hypertrophy of culture in our species means that we are very limited in the extent to which we can legitimately extrapolate from what we see in other mammals when we consider behaviour, and specifically, behavioural differences between the sexes. With very limited exceptions, such as breastfeeding, there is no human behaviour unique to one sex, and even breastfeeding and similar examples are heavily influenced by culture in a way that has no parallel in other species.

    As can be seen quite clearly from this, my point about the very limited number of human behaviours unique to one sex was an expansion and illustration of my contention that “we are very limited in the extent to which we can legitimately extrapolate from what we see in other mammals when we consider behaviour, and specifically, behavioural differences between the sexes”. I did not claim, because I do not believe, that there are no differences in predispositions between the sexes in humans. I do believe that it is extremely difficult to determine whether a current difference in behaviour has an innate component, precisely because everything human beings do, beyond reflexes, is shaped by culture.

  270. Anthony K says

    I am always happy to give my opinion on anything, if asked, but I am no more about to come on Pharyngula looking for people who are disagreeing with Myers to respond to when I don’t come here looking for those who agree with him to respond to!

    The evidence strongly suggests otherwise.

  271. consciousness razor says

    Since I left early last night….

    noelplum99, #623:

    there comes a point, and it has just arrived, where i have to say to you that if you wish to critique my content then you are going to have to go and have a look at it.

    I wasn’t critiquing it (that would’ve been much more in-depth and specific), but asking you to do it yourself, as objectively and comprehensively as you can, since you of all people would be familiar with it. You don’t have to report your findings back to me or whatever. I just want you to think, which I’m sure you want too, assuming you care about your own content. If you want to take this defensive posture with yourself, then you’re doing it wrong.

    In particular, I’d like evaluation in terms of how it treats women equally to men, how much attention it pays to social/economic inequality of all kinds, and whether it offers any decent solutions to how we can can reduce inequality or any kind of perspective on why we should do that.

    If, in the mean time, you want to explain to me why the documentary hypothesis; the historical origins of the israelites; Plantinga’s EAAN; holocaust justification by the deuteronomic historian; promoting pessimistic incompatibilism; atemporal agency or the incorrect application of ontological arguments require a specific gendered perspective? Please do tell.

    First, those are certainly not the only issues pertaining to religion, atheism and moral philosophy. (I don’t know what you mean by “etc.”) You can pick out all sorts of issues which have little or nothing to do with people today or how they relate to other people; but that does not mean psychological, sociological, aesthetic, ethical and political issues (among others, this is just a broad outline) are not every bit as important or representative of what we all have to address as atheists.

    Secondly, I’m not saying they require “a specific gendered perspective.” You’re suggesting that any indication that you think women should be treated equally (because that’s what feminism is) is somehow “gendered” and only valid from the perspective of women, but I reject that. I’m sure, at least in some ways, you do think men and women should be treated equally. That is not a “gendered perspective.” That’s a perspective on fairness and equality, which does in fact come up quite often when discussing religion, atheism and moral philosophy.

    You cannot weasel your way out of it. This is basic stuff, especially for anyone remotely interested in “moral philosophy” (unless somehow that’s only supposed to mean very specific bits of counter-apologetics). And I’ll note that if you only ever put the burden on religions for all the ills women suffer, without ever looking at how secular parts of our cultures (and specifically the atheist/secular/skeptic movement) are also responsible for their part, you’re most definitely doing it wrong.

  272. Anthony K says

    Whoops:

    I am always happy to give my opinion on anything, if asked, but I am no more about to come on Pharyngula looking for people who are disagreeing with Myers to respond to when I don’t come here looking for those who agree with him to respond to!

    The evidence strongly suggests otherwise.

  273. Tethys says

    Aw, piece of shit has met his entirely predictable fate before I could sharpen my fangs.

    a BS in adolescent education

    I suspect the only true part of this claim is the BS. I shudder to think of any adolescents being taught by such a worthless specimen of humanity as slowwit17.

  274. slow17motlon says

    As much as it hurts my heart I have been banned. I will now venture bravely into the abyss. Much like Christ, I promise I’ll be back real soon (though I guess it’ll be under another name).

    Later, gators!

  275. vaiyt says

    I assure you that they’re not doing anything in their graves aside from decomposing.

    I was already sure you, being the speshul snowflake you are, would dismiss the endless struggle that gave you the opportunity to be here shitting on other gay people. Meanwhile, people still suffer and die for your right to be an asshat, and you think nothing bad is happening because you happened to benefit from that.

  276. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    We have a dyed-in-the-wool troll. Save yourself the trouble and don’t come back at all. I’m really just thinking about saving you time and effort.

  277. says

    PZ Myers @809

    He only has himself to blame. I explained to him advance how this goes and that if he assumes the same rules will apply to him as they do to the ‘house trolls’ he would not last long. He clearly didn’t take heed :)

    Jim

    PS: One of the things I DO like about this place, whilst on the subject, is that I always had a problem with the idea of trolls. The idea that trolls descend on a forum just seems the wrong way round. What is so great about Pharyngula is that you get that real sense of incumbency; the kind of solidity of location that a bridge evokes; that reassuring sensation of ownership and residency that seems one of the almost ineffible qualities of our idealised conceptualisation of what a troll should be.

    It has surely taken some work on your part PZ – for sure trolls do not grow on trees – and i give you credit where credit is due: this is probably the finest collection of ‘house trolls’ on the entire internetz!!!

    ;)
    Jim.

  278. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says

    and i give you credit where credit is due: this is probably the finest collection of ‘house trolls’ on the entire internetz!!!

    Translation: People smarter than Desperate Jim are trolls because he can’t refute them. That’s what “troll” means, right?

  279. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says

    Well, that and swearing that burns his precious eyeballs.

    As if I needed MORE incentive to swear.

  280. says

    I explained to him advance how this goes and that if he assumes the same rules will apply to him as they do to the ‘house trolls’ he would not last long.

    aren’t you a dishonest little shit. please, show where PZ lets any “house trolls” get away with bigoted slurs?

  281. says

    I explained to him advance how this goes and that if he assumes the same rules will apply to him as they do to the ‘house trolls’ he would not last long.

    The same rules apply to everyone. You just seem to be unwilling to pay attention to what those rules actually are. (Hint: personal insultsper se do not violate them.)

  282. Rey Fox says

    Yes, you mentioned being gay in the first four comments of yours.

    But he’s better than that, he’s one of those manly gays, the kind that he thinks doesn’t upset the straights. Oh, and apparently he’s the arbiter of geek culture as well. He’s so special. I wish I was special.

  283. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    I explained to him advance how this goes and that if he assumes the same rules will apply to him as they do to the ‘house trolls’ he would not last long. He clearly didn’t take heed :)

    That’s rich. Like, Ikea monkey in a shearling coat rich.

  284. says

    @829

    What about a comment like this one:

    How’s this, Jimmy, you fucking two-faced lying bag of shit?
    You go fuck yourself. Get something heavy and sharp. Die whilst doing it, if possible.

    Would you regard that as violating the house rules, or did slow17motion say anything which was worse than that? (and if he HAD, maybe some kind of warning? certainly every single comment of his i read had him simply giving back the same he was getting)

    The comment i quoted was made to me on Pharyngula. To be fair, it was retracted a day later after a fellow commenter said it had overstepped the mark. PZ Myers clearly didn’t see much issue with it though – but then it was made by one of his (very) regulars.

    Jim

  285. ezekiel says

    The same rules apply to everyone. You just seem to be unwilling to pay attention to what those rules actually are. (Hint: personal insults per se do not violate them.)

    Oh right, so this is ok, for example:
    NOELPLUM99/JIM/MRA/FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT:
    I’m going to refer to you however the fuck I want to dirtbag.

    but saying “this forum can be really retarded” is a terrible ableist slur, that causes massive hurt to people?

    Ok, got it.

  286. Anthony K says

    Would you regard that as violating the house rules, or did slow17motion say anything which was worse than that?

    certainly every single comment of his i read had him simply giving back the same he was getting

    but saying “this forum can be really retarded” is a terrible ableist slur, that causes massive hurt to people?

    The difference here is in whether or not one is slagging entire groups of people for their identity, as opposed to speaking directly to one individual without impugning entire groups of others who are already systematically disenfranchised.

    Is this that hard a concept for straight white males to understand?

  287. consciousness razor says

    Oh right, so this is ok, for example:
    NOELPLUM99/JIM/MRA/FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT:
    I’m going to refer to you however the fuck I want to dirtbag.

    but saying “this forum can be really retarded” is a terrible ableist slur, that causes massive hurt to people?

    Yes. It is in fact an ableist slur, and those are bad.

    Why would one depend on the other anyway? How the fuck is it supposed to be relevant?

  288. Tethys says

    Since noelplum and ezekial are clueless idjits who can’t tell the difference between an insult and a bigotted slur, I will provide a link to the rule about Splash Damage

  289. ezekiel says

    Ok, I think I’m getting it… could you please provide some examples of acceptable personal insults, so that I can be better prepared to discuss theses issues on here in the future.

    Thanks.

  290. says

    @832&833
    Since you apparently can’t find the commenting rules, or didn’t bother to look for them (which you really should, when visiting a new blog), I’ll give you a hint: Look on the right side of the page where it says “Profile,” in the box above the picture of your host, or just follow this handsome and well-crafted link. If you’re too lazy to even do that, I’ve quoted the immediately relevan part below.

    No splash damage. I have no problem with insults (except, not in the Lounge!), and encourage everyone to use vigorous and creative language. Except…I insist that you be precise and focused. Stilettos, not shotguns. There are classes of insults that rely on broad spectrum stereotypes to be insulting: racist, sexist, ableist, ageist slurs don’t just hit your target, they hit everyone in that group. So when you slam Joe Schmoe for being “old”, you’re also slamming me, and we old people get tetchy and cranky about that sort of thing.

    Now, having read that, please moderate your behaviour appropriately, or better yet just shut the fuck up (especially you, ezekiel.)

  291. Tethys says

    could you please provide some examples of acceptable personal insults

    I suggest you review the 800+ comments in this thread. It’s chock full of acceptable insults.

  292. Anthony K says

    A set of rules which allows your house trolls carte blanche to employ their usual modus operandi but picks out anyone else is not necessarily reasonable.

    Which house trolls use “faggot” as a slur with impunity?

  293. Anthony K says

    A set of rules which allows your house trolls carte blanche to employ their usual modus operandi but picks out anyone else is not necessarily reasonable.

    Which house trolls use “chink” as a slur with impunity?

  294. Anthony K says

    A set of rules which allows your house trolls carte blanche to employ their usual modus operandi but picks out anyone else is not necessarily reasonable.

    Which house trolls use “cunt” as a slur with impunity?

  295. nms says

    Brownian, I think his argument is that, by allowing insults but not slurs, the rules unfairly discriminate against people who use slurs as insults.

  296. consciousness razor says

    Ok, I think I’m getting it… could you please provide some examples of acceptable personal insults

    No. It does not work to take some dumbass brute force approach of delineating everything that is “acceptable,” without any justification. It’s like you’re insisting that there must be no rhyme or reason for why these things are bad. It’s like you don’t want to learn how to fish; you just want us to give you a fish. That will not work. You have to start by recognizing what a particular insult is and what it does. Whether it’s “acceptable” follows from all of that.

    But seriously, just go fuck yourself. You do not want to discuss this. You want to troll.

  297. says

    By the way, glass17house isn’t even remotely funny.

    This, and much more make glass17house and ahmetduran look to be very close buddies. Perhaps we were visited by 4chan’s best and brightest.

  298. says

    Hey noelplum99, are you ever going to stop lying and hiding in the shadows when it comes time to put your money where your mouth is? You’ve had one opportunity after another to prove your “method” works. However, whenever there’s a particularly rancid fuckwit on the loose, you fail to dazzle with your oh-so-incredible-and-utterly-civilised-and-always-convincing method.

    Now that glass17house has been banned, you’re automagically back. Amazin’ how that works.

  299. ezekiel says

    Ok, so these are all examples of acceptable insults that I can freely use?

    - Who here do you think wants to deal with those fucking slimewads? Is this one of the things that makes you such a special fucking snowflake?

    - You really are either a dishonest little shit, or a total fuckwit – or of course, both.

    - Are you so fucking stupid that you don’t understand …

    - Either you are running for Biggest Dumbfuck of 2012, or you think everybody here is as stupid as you portray yourself to be.

    - But apparently you’re either too stupid to realize this, or too much of an asshole to care. Either way, fuck off already.

    - Typical loser post. Try again when you have something other than your fuckwitted OPINION.

    - Whatever you claim is wrong. End of story. Try again with a functioning brain, which allows for the fact you are wrong…

    - Care to supply EVIDENCE to back up Jim’s fuckwitted claims?

    There are plenty more, but that’s just the first few results of a quick page search for “fuck”.

    But aren’t these insults also hurtful to snowflakes, “fuckwits”/(stupid people), people without functioning brains and losers?

    I mean, 5 out of 8 olympic runners don’t get a medal for finishing past third. Surely they could be offended at such a glib use of the term “loser”?

    Oh hey, I have an idea…. how about you all stop throwing insults around and actually address other peoples opinions for a change? Who knows, maybe a worthwhile discussion could happen!

  300. ezekiel says

    But seriously, just go fuck yourself. You do not want to discuss this. You want to troll.

    Oh right… how about this:

    YOU go fuck yourself.

    If you need to insult anyone, by any means, using any words, then your argument has already failed. Try to come up with a reasonable counter-argument and I’ll listen to it.

    Until then, go fuck yourself.

  301. Anthony K says

    If you need to insult anyone, by any means, using any words, then your argument has already failed.

    What an oddly unskeptical thing to say.

  302. consciousness razor says

    If you need to insult anyone, by any means, using any words, then your argument has already failed

    Which fucking argument do you think failed because I supposedly “need” to insult you?

    Try to come up with a reasonable counter-argument and I’ll listen to it.

    I did, but you’ve ignored it.

  303. Tethys says

    nullplumb

    Yes, we discriminate against stupid here. You can stop posting stupid shit at any time, I’m sure none of the horde will shed a tear at not having to read your whinging.

  304. says

    how about you all stop throwing insults around and actually address other peoples opinions for a change?

    The thin is, shit for brains, that when you express an opinion on a topic where objective facts are available, your opinion must be informed by those facts if you want anyone here to take it seriously. Now if we were having a discussion about whether Jim Morrison wrote better songs than John Lennon, or your favorite flavor of berry, then your opinion would be just as good as anyone else’s. But we’re not, and the topics presently under discussion are one on which objective facts are available. You have chosen to ignore these facts when forming your opinion, and it is therefore correctly being dismissed out of hand.

  305. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It’s too bad, slow17motion seemed like a good egg, that one. Well, he did promise he’d come back. He probably has like fifty email accounts and can keep registering for, like, ever. Not that he’d DO that mind you.

    Gee, a morpher/sockpuppeteer is a good egg. In whose book? Nobody around here. Xe was an egotistical asshat without a valid point. All OPINION and ATTITUDE, but NO EVIDENCE.

  306. nms says

    Well, he did promise he’d come back. He probably has like fifty email accounts and can keep registering for, like, ever. Not that he’d DO that mind you.

    Tell us more.

  307. consciousness razor says

    What an oddly unskeptical thing to say.

    Definitely odd. I don’t know how it works (maybe I shouldn’t ask), but this argument apparently fails because it contains (no — it needs to contain) teh naughty words:

    Socrates is a man, you delusional fuck.
    All men are mortal, even though a credulous delusional fuck like you might not believe something so abundantly fucking verified by the evidence.
    Therefore, Socrates is mortal, you fucking shitstain.

  308. Anthony K says

    sockpuppet? How DARE you accuse me of being a sockpuppet.

    Am not.

    Yes, obvious trolling is so much more productive than swearing.

  309. Emrysmyrddin says

    It’s too bad, slow17motion seemed like a good egg, that one. Well, he did promise he’d come back. He probably has like fifty email accounts and can keep registering for, like, ever. Not that he’d DO that mind you.

    Ahahahaha. They think hir brand of trolling is new to Pharyngula. Heheh. Ehehehehe. This’ll be fun.

  310. says

    The same goes for the use of the word “cunt”. It’s used constantly by people in Australia–and it’s rather endearing.

    Please, please, please do not force us to re-hash the reasons why this excuse is bullshit again. I have to go to work now and I just don’t have time to find it for you, it’s probably on the wiki over to the right, go have a look around. In the meantime, just shut the fuck up. Or, in the much more likely event that you’re slowthinker nym shifting, just fuck off.

  311. ezekiel says

    So, to summarize:

    Shermer said, “it’s more of a guy thing”.

    Some people see this as evidence that Shermer is in fact a sexist and must now be called to task for it. He must apologize publicly and retract this statement in order for progress to be made.

    Other people see this statement as perhaps a poor choice of words, but one that does not necessarily imply sexism. It is simply an abbreviated form of something along the lines of “more males tend to do this thing than females”.

    There is no explanation offered in that quote as to *why* this trend might be occurring – it is a simple observation of fact. There may in fact be evidence that exists that would at first glance bolster the allegations of sexism, but this same evidence can just as easily be dismissed as circumstantial, since the quote does not contain additional information, such as “it’s more a of a guy thing, because girls are too busy making sammiches to participate”.

    Please explain to me where insults are appropriate in an adult discussion to determine the implicit meaning in the spoken words of a non-present third party.

    Thank you.

  312. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Now that glass17house has been banned, you’re automagically back. Amazin’ how that works.

    Very coincidental. Maybe PZ could check IP addresses when he’s done grading.

  313. Thomathy, Gay Where it Counts says

    Now we’re going to be plagued by sockpuppet theatre? It’s so …boring.

  314. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Please explain to me where insults are appropriate in an adult discussion to determine the implicit meaning in the spoken words of a non-present third party.

    In case you missed the topic of the thread, we have been discussing it for 868 posts, minus trolls and our responses to them. Unles you have new EVIDENCE, and not just OPINION, to add to the discussion, why bother with more? Think about that before you respond.

  315. consciousness razor says

    Socrates WAS mortal.

    Doesn’t matter. He was mortal when he was alive. He didn’t become immortal when he died. So he is also mortal when he is dead. That assumes “Socrates” still refers to something, even though it is something which is dead (and certainly isn’t in one piece anymore). If it doesn’t refer to anything, then “Socrates was mortal” doesn’t refer to anything either.

  316. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m not a sockpuppet. I’m just a man…

    EVIDENCE, or shut the fuck up…

  317. says

    Nerd:

    Very coincidental. Maybe PZ could check IP addresses when he’s done grading.

    Nothing like that. Jim shows up in one thread after another (all of them dealing with sexism or feminism, natch), to berate us shrill meanies and constantly harp at us for not arguing correctly. In every thread where he has done this, there has always been at least one particularly rancid person, espousing rancid, ugly views.

    Every time, people request that Jim put his oh-so-excellent and better-than-you-cretins method to the test, to go ahead and convince us by example. We wait patiently for Jim to take them on with his method and turn them completely around in the most civilised of ways, of course. Jim hasn’t managed this one time, as he conveniently disappears or simply keeps on berating the regulars here or takes up for the rancid troll.

  318. nms says

    Shermer said, “it’s more of a guy thing”.

    Some people see this as evidence that Shermer is in fact a sexist and must now be called to task for it. He must apologize publicly and retract this statement in order for progress to be made.

    Wrong, try again.

  319. Anthony K says

    He must apologize publicly and retract this statement in order for progress to be made.

    Please explain to me where lies are appropriate in an adult discussion.

  320. ezekiel says

    Wrong, try again.

    Please explain to me where lies are appropriate in an adult discussion.

    From the Original article:
    “A good response would have been to admit that he’d made an unthinking, stupid remark and that he’d like to retract it.”

    “It might have been cleverer of you to just say, “I was wrong, I made a sexist remark, the evidence shows that it’s not a guy thing.” A column in which he recognized his own sexism and talked about conscious efforts to improve would have been a good and respectful step forward.”

    It’s more surreal than the Twilight Zone in here…

  321. says

    But aren’t these insults also hurtful to snowflakes…

    Are you seriously unable to tell the difference between a snowflake and a human being?

  322. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Shit, you caught me. I’m living tissue over metal endoskeleton.

    The word of a liar and bullshitter until you SHOW EVIDENCE, not just claim it.

  323. consciousness razor says

    “A human being subject to death.”

    Who says that’s the definition? Why should a definition make our conclusion for us?

    And why is it just “human beings,” if you’re not just making this shit up on the spot?

    Is this how all delusional fuckstains think logic works?

    BOOM.

    Fuck off.

  324. says

    How’s this, Jimmy, you fucking two-faced lying bag of shit?
    You go fuck yourself. Get something heavy and sharp. Die whilst doing it, if possible.

    dude, those are insults, not slurs. no splash damage.

  325. Rey Fox says

    Other people see this statement as perhaps a poor choice of words, but one that does not necessarily imply sexism.

    All this time, all these comments, and people still think that this is all about four god damn words?

    Yeah, I think we’re at the stage where insults are the only choice.

  326. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Give me your address and I’ll send it to you overnight shipping.

    Try your nearest mental health facility. I’m sure they will give it the proper consideration.

  327. Anthony K says

    There is no explanation offered in that quote as to *why* this trend might be occurring – it is a simple observation of fact.

    Now, that’s the part that’s wrong. That was Shermer’s attempt to explain the disparity in response to a direct question. It’s not a statement of fact.

    But, of course, this has been already hashed out. Several times.

  328. says

    It is simply an abbreviated form of something along the lines of “more males tend to do this thing than females”.

    repeating this stupid claim after it’s been shown to be incoherent garbage isn’t going to make it less incoherent and garbage-like

  329. omnicrom says

    Ezekial you are at the very best being intellectually dishonest.

    Explain how there can be any form of debate about Shermer’s words in context. He is asked why there aren’t more women in skepticism and his response is that it’s “A Guy Thing”. He then doubled down and went around finding quotes and people to shore up his defenses and justify that skepticism is indeed “A Guy Thing”.

    If you SERIOUSLY cannot figure out why people see this as Sexist then please leave. If you are unable to recognize that just dismissing women from an intellectual pursuit or philosophy is sexist then leave. We don’t want you and this blog has nothing for you. You can complain about echo chambers or sycophants or whatever, but the fact is that you are supporting a sexist position and Michael Shermer said a sexist thing. It doesn’t matter if YOU think it wasn’t sexist, the words he said in the context he said them and the follow-up justification of those words were sexist.

    As for complaining about all these meanies on the internet grow up. You’re the one lecturing Pharyngula about being immature while complaining about nasty words and swears? You open with a salvo of dismissive sexism and then spend the next 400 posts openly trolling. There is no way to read most of your comments between posts 450 and 600 except as coming from an annoying pest. After being misogynistic and annoying you’re honestly going to go clutching pearls about the mean language on the blog? Leave. This blog isn’t for you. No one is forcing you to be here. As long as you continue to justify sexist language you will face nothing but abuse here. You can complain about how we’re like Mean Girls in High School or how coarse language has no point in adult conversation but it won’t do you any good. Leave.

  330. says

    No splash damage. WIN!

    oh, no honeycakes. rape-threats are sexist. splash damage. you fail.

    it’s pathetic how limited the imagination of bigots is that they can only insult by trying to defend their spot in the kyriarchy. so so sad

  331. ChasCPeterson says

    those are insults, not slurs

    synonyms to most English speakers. This fuels miscommunication.
    They are not ethnic, gendered, or otherwise group-specific slurs.

    pube licking

    How’s that an insult? (One of my very favorite activities.)
    Asshole.

  332. consciousness razor says

    The dictionary said it was the word’s definition. I looked it up and stuff.

    Okay. So now you’re going to explain to us why it’s true that animals are not mortal, for example, because only human beings are mortal and only until they die?

    But, yeah, words should just have no specific meaning.

    It doesn’t fucking follow, asshole, that if your definition doesn’t work, there are no others.

  333. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    ezekiel,

    Other people see this statement as perhaps a poor choice of words, but one that does not necessarily imply sexism. It is simply an abbreviated form of something along the lines of “more males tend to do this thing than females”.

    There is no explanation offered in that quote as to *why* this trend might be occurring – it is a simple observation of fact.

    You are incorrect.

    Quoting Jadehawk:

    another annoying thing: all these fucking douchebisquits whining about how Shermer’s comment was “taken out of context”, only to go ahead and try to defend his comment by taking it out of context and pretending that wasn’t an answer to why there are fewer women in the top tiers of skepticism/atheism.

    They keep on insisting that the “it’s a guy thing” was merely noting that there are more men than women in visible/leadership positions; in context though, that makes no sense, because “there are more men than women” doesn’t work as an answer to “why are there more men than women”. OTOH, “well, guys just want it more” does work as an answer to that, even if it’s obviously bull.

    IOW, you can’t make the “well, it’s a guy thing because more men do it” defense without taking the statement out of context

  334. says

    Saying that I HOPE you die is splash damage

    you’re the dumbest fucker I’ve talked to this week, if you can’t tell the difference between a rape threat and being told to fuck off and die

  335. ezekiel says

    Now, that’s the part that’s wrong. That was Shermer’s attempt to explain the disparity in response to a direct question. It’s not a statement of fact.

    The original article only says that “Shermer was caught saying in a video discussion about why women aren’t participating as much in the skeptical movement”, and does not mention the fact that it was a direct question. Indeed, it actually makes it sound like a very informal, almost conversational coffee-table chat among friends.

    You know, the sort of environment where one might be a little more casual regarding their choice of words, rather than trying to be as diplomatic as possible?

    Given the original article as a stand-alone piece, it is impossible to know for certain whether Shermer is guilty of sexism or simply guilty of using a poor choice of words. The only way to determine this is through the persuasive words of the author, who I think we can all agree, is holding something of a flame for equal-rights, and is perhaps – just this once – seeing boogie-men where they don’t really exist.

    That is all.

  336. strange gods before me ॐ rational skeptic seeking truth for friendship, possibly more says

    ezekiel,

    Other people see this statement as perhaps a poor choice of words, but one that does not necessarily imply sexism. It is simply an abbreviated form of something along the lines of “more males tend to do this thing than females”.

    There is no explanation offered in that quote as to *why* this trend might be occurring – it is a simple observation of fact.

    You are incorrect.

    Quoting John Morales:

    To paraphrase its form:
    Q: Why are there more men involved?
    A: Because it’s more of a guy thing.

    It takes a particularly obtuse person to read that piece and imagine that explaining* why the gender difference in participation is so great by claiming it’s more of a guy thing is attempting to answer the question rather than merely restating its basis.

    Look at the context:

    The host, Cara Santa Maria, presented a question: Why isn’t the gender split in atheism closer to 50-50? Shermer explained, “It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.”

    * But grant that perverse reading, and then Shermer’s response becomes a vacuous non sequitur rather than a sexist belief.

    (Which, in Shermer’s case, almost certainly would mean it’s deliberate evasiveness since I hardly consider him as doltish that — i.e. as those who genuinely attempt to defend the claim by this transparently disingenous dodge)

    That was just upthread. You shouldn’t have missed it.

  337. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    That is all.

    Sounds like you have had your say and are flouncing. Otherwise, you don’t need a sign-off, which is for pompous egotistical fools with nothing cogent to say, trying to preen and display to gain status.

  338. John Morales says

    ezekiel:

    Given the original article as a stand-alone piece, it is impossible to know for certain whether Shermer is guilty of sexism or simply guilty of using a poor choice of words. The only way to determine this is through the persuasive words of the author, who I think we can all agree, is holding something of a flame for equal-rights, and is perhaps – just this once – seeing boogie-men where they don’t really exist.

    Or, in your case, not seeing the boogie on his nose. (cf. my #674 where I address that stupidity).

  339. Anthony K says

    The original article only says that “Shermer was caught saying in a video discussion about why women aren’t participating as much in the skeptical movement”, and does not mention the fact that it was a direct question. Indeed, it actually makes it sound like a very informal, almost conversational coffee-table chat among friends.

    You’re kidding. You didn’t even follow the links in the OP, but you’re insistent that all sorts of context-free quotemining from a friendly chat among friends was going on?

  340. ezekiel says

    Sounds like you have had your say and are flouncing. Otherwise, you don’t need a sign-off, which is for pompous egotistical fools with nothing cogent to say, trying to preen and display to gain status.

    Actually, “That is all”, was a simple statement of “There is my position and I stand by it”.

    But, just like everyone else on this blog, read into it what you will and psycho-analyze my every word, searching desperately for signs of misogyny or bigotry. Knock yourself out, and while you’re at it, don’t forget to search my twitter (@fictionfaith) or blog (faithorfiction.wordpress.com) pages for some deep-seated hatred of women.

    I’ll wait.

  341. John Morales says

    [meta]

    made2heal who was once the slow one but now is the banned one: it is amusing to see how your need for trolling increases page-hits and thus makes advertisers more likely to put money into FTB coffers. Heh.

    (Your droppings will in due course be duly flushed by PZ with the click of a button, and you will feel the urge to morph yet again so that you can profitably spend your time creating yet another account with which to hoggle)

  342. omnicrom says

    Ezekial please leave.

    You have demonstrated you are an incredibly loathsome liar. Words have meanings. Posts you have been careful to avoid responding to have debunked your specious claim that Shermer didn’t mean the words that he said and doubled up on.

  343. Anthony K says

    But, just like everyone else on this blog, read into it what you will

    What a load of shit. I’ve never seen such obvious quote-mining and context-hiding in all my life.

  344. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Actually, “That is all”, was a simple statement of “There is my position and I stand by it”.

    Yep, pompous egotisitcal fool preen for displays of dominance, which it can never obtain on the internet. Who gives a shit what you think? Only an egotistical fool would think we give a shit about your EVIDENCELESS OPINION.

    So, either back up your opinion with evidence, or you have had your say. Everything else is bullying.

  345. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’ve had enough of your disingenuous assertions.

    Oh, look at internet tough guy trying to display dominence. Must be an MRA fuckwit. Otherwise, it would just fade into the bandwidth.

  346. myuido says

    @Anthony K, Post 909

    You’re kidding. You didn’t even follow the links in the OP, but you’re insistent that all sorts of context-free quotemining from a friendly chat among friends was going on?

    What would you say is going on in that video? I’d say that he was asked a direct question about the gender difference in atheists as a group. Which he answered by drawing a distinction between atheists as a whole (likely to be 50/50 split) and atheists who are interested in attending atheist conferences, speaking etc (more likely to be male). Then he let the others on the panel speak.

    It seems to me that only a particularly mean-spirited person could take his words and assume they were really on the level as “women can’t do thinky”. Surely he has every right to respond to that nonsense without being mindlessly accused of “doubling down”.

  347. says

    “women can’t do thinky”

    And with this ^ we’re supposed to think you’re on the level?

    Surely he has every right to respond to that nonsense without being mindlessly accused of “doubling down”.

    He did respond. His response was to double down. You aren’t too good at this “thinky” business.

  348. Anthony K says

    What would you say is going on in that video? I’d say that he was asked a direct question about the gender difference in atheists as a group. Which he answered by drawing a distinction between atheists as a whole (likely to be 50/50 split) and atheists who are interested in attending atheist conferences, speaking etc (more likely to be male). Then he let the others on the panel speak.

    I would say that he pulled an assertion out of his ass, and one that falls squarely into the type of general, structural sexism that women who are atheists and skeptics, who do attend and speak at atheist conferences. In essence, he contributed to the problem, rather than providing any real or useful information.

    It seems to me that only a particularly mean-spirited person could take his words and assume they were really on the level as “women can’t do thinky”.

    So you really don’t have a problem with imputing malicious motives to people; you’re just selective about it.

  349. Anthony K says

    “women can’t do thinky”

    And with this ^ we’re supposed to think you’re on the level?

    Unless I’m misunderstanding you Caine, myuido is using Ophelia’s phrase here. That’s on the level.

  350. Anthony K says

    And for the record, Ophelia’s paraphrasing of Shermer is incomplete. A more accurate paraphrase would be “women don’t do talky about thinky.”

  351. myuido says

    @Anthony K, Post 921

    I would say that he pulled an assertion out of his ass, and one that falls squarely into the type of general, structural sexism that women who are atheists and skeptics, who do attend and speak at atheist conferences. In essence, he contributed to the problem, rather than providing any real or useful information.

    So when PZ Myers notes that the atheist movement is dominated by old white men, that presumably would also be pulling an assertion out of his ass. Or is he just making an observation?

    So you really don’t have a problem with imputing malicious motives to people; you’re just selective about it.

    Well I suppose i’m in good company at least. :)

  352. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You lack the EVIDENCE required. I think you need to show us some sources or alternative examples to demonstrate EVIDENCE.

    You are a liar and bullshitter until you show EVIDENCE otherwise. YOUR OPINION IS *POOF* DISMISSED AS FUCKWITTED BULLSHIT.

  353. Ichthyic says

    So when PZ Myers notes that the atheist movement is dominated by old white men, that presumably would also be pulling an assertion out of his ass. Or is he just making an observation?

    wait, what?

    Yes, PZ, like the host of the video shermer is featured in, is making a direct observation.

    you, OTOH, are making an assertion.

    I’d say, “own goal”, but I doubt you have the capacity to understand what that means.

  354. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It seems to me that only a particularly mean-spirited person could take his words and assume they were really on the level as “women can’t do thinky”.

    This is your OPINION. Without evidence to back up your assertion of mean-spirited, it can *POOF* be dismissed as bullshit and fuckwittery on your part.

  355. Anthony K says

    So when PZ Myers notes that the atheist movement is dominated by old white men, that presumably would also be pulling an assertion out of his ass. Or is he just making an observation?

    Are you really unable to parse the difference between noting the demographic claim (“the atheist movement is dominated by old white men”) and Shermer’s ‘explanation’ that men want it more?

  356. consciousness razor says

    So when PZ Myers notes that the atheist movement is dominated by old white men, that presumably would also be pulling an assertion out of his ass. Or is he just making an observation?

    Was he being asked something like, “why is the atheist movement dominated by old white men?” And was he claiming that somehow it explains itself?

  357. Anthony K says

    “It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.”

    How did Shermer observe this ‘want’? What’s the observation here?

  358. myuido says

    @Anthony K, Post 930

    Are you really unable to parse the difference between noting the demographic claim (“the atheist movement is dominated by old white men”) and Shermer’s ‘explanation’ that men want it more?

    I don’t think that Shermer was positing it as an explanation. He was drawing a distinction so that the question could be better discussed.

  359. consciousness razor says

    How did Shermer observe this ‘want’? What’s the observation here?

    He learned a lot of tricks debunking the fake mind-readers.

    Because obviously he couldn’t just fucking ask women what they actually want.

  360. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Well consciousness razor, the reason it is dominated by old white men is because it’s really more of a “guy thing”, ya know?

    More lies and bullshit. Self-perpetuating male privilege at work, as anybody with a working brain and understanding of how society works would tell you. But then, you haven’t shown you can think, only posture, preen, and pretend to be cogent while showing abject ignorance, lies and bullshit.

  361. says

    Anthony K:

    Unless I’m misunderstanding you Caine, myuido is using Ophelia’s phrase here. That’s on the level.

    No, you didn’t misunderstand, I fucked up. My apologies. Too little sleep and not enough coffee.

  362. Anthony K says

    I don’t think that Shermer was positing it as an explanation. He was drawing a distinction so that the question could be better discussed.

    That’s your interpretation of this interaction:

    Cara Santa Maria: Why isn’t the gender split in atheism closer to 50-50?
    Shermer: It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.

  363. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Heck, maybe they do WANT to go–but they lack the motivation.

    Or maybe they are sexually harassed, treated like second class citizens, and made to feel unwelcome. All at the hands of MRA fuckwits who can’t think past the end of their dicks.

  364. Stacy says

    made2heal’s trolling reminds me of the spurned lover who keeps calling you on the phone over and over and over and over again.

    You need to deal with your feelings of rejection, sweetie, and find a blog that can appreciate you.

  365. Ichthyic says

    I don’t think that Shermer was positing it as an explanation. He was drawing a distinction so that the question could be better discussed.

    he was posed a direct question by the host.

    he directly tried to answer that question.

    you fail in your “thinking”

  366. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Peggy Bundy’s of the world: If you want more representation, go and get it!

    Yep, the MRA troll like made2heal is ready to harass you, put you at the losing end of male privilege, and treat you like dirt for invading xis “guy space”. Otherwise, Xe would be explaining what xe is doing to make women more welcome at all levels….

  367. myuido says

    @Anthony K, Post 439

    It’s my interpretation of this interaction:

    Sherma:I think it’s probably really is 50/50. It’s about who really wants to talk about it, go on shows about it…
    Santa Maria: That’s really the question.
    Sherma: Go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it.. it’s more of a guy thing.
    Santa Maria: Why do you think it’s more of a guy thing? Because. I don’t get it. I mean for me it’s more of a me thing. I’m a girl so… I don’t get it why other girls don’t see it as being more of a girl thing.

    At this point another member of the panel starts to speak. Sherma is sitting, listening and nodding his head.

  368. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It’s my interpretation of this interaction:

    We’ve heard it. Either find new and real evidence, or fade away. You are repeating yourself ad nauseum, and that isn’t a cogent argument.

  369. Anthony K says

    myuido, that doesn’t wash out the “it’s about who wants…it’s more of a guy thing”.

    If he’s “drawing a distinction”, then he’s begging the question.

  370. myuido says

    @Anthony K. Post 947

    Looking at it again. There might just be a possibility that he doesn’t know. Like when politicians don’t know the answer to a question, or don’t want to answer the question they’ll tend to stall by repeating it back in another form.

  371. says

    These dorks at the conventions aren’t going to rape you, it’s the people in the alley outside that you should be worried about.

    Smart rapists–the ones who get away with it over and over–don’t hang out in alleys. They go to conventions and approach women so they can identify the ones who are least likely to report a rape so long as they (the rapists) follow the “not-a-rape” script: get acquainted first, isolate the woman, ply her with alcohol and/or drugs, threaten her, THEN rape her. IOW, the dorks at the convention are a far more salient threat than the dudes in the alley. Because rapists know that if they hang out among those dorks, and follow the “not-a-rape” script, the dorks will have their backs, and the women won’t report the rape, because they know that the dorks won’t believe them.

    Thanks for demonstrating your ignorance.

  372. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    There might just be a possibility that he doesn’t know.

    You can OPINE and commit sophistry all you want to attempt to change your mind, but after 900 posts your OPINION is simply a repeat we have heard dozens of times already. They weren’t convincing then, and yours aren’t now. Why can’t you see that?

  373. says

    What would you say is going on in that video? I’d say that he was asked a direct question about the gender difference in atheists as a group. Which he answered by drawing a distinction between atheists as a whole (likely to be 50/50 split) and atheists who are interested in attending atheist conferences, speaking etc (more likely to be male). Then he let the others on the panel speak.

    Yeah, basically, the question was, “Why does it seem as if atheism is a guy thing,” and his response was, “Because it’s a guy thing.” Not the best display of critical inquiry skills.

  374. Anthony K says

    There might just be a possibility that he doesn’t know. Like when politicians don’t know the answer to a question, or don’t want to answer the question they’ll tend to stall by repeating it back in another form.

    If he’d rather pull shit out of his ass then admit he doesn’t know and research is needed, then what use is he as a skeptic?

    How is claiming that his remark isn’t evidence of sexism but incompetence a defence?

    Whatever, I’ll accept it.

    Hey, Sherman: why don’t you step the fuck down and let Michelle Bachmann have a crack at your job?

  375. Bill Openthalt says

    Is it your contention that the existence and identification of social processes are completely subjective? Is that the fucking idiotic route you want to take?

    Not completely subjective, but very much determined by one’s values. You are responsible for your interpretations, and these interpretations will be coloured by your experiences, beliefs and convictions. If you feel oppressed, you’ll be more likely to interpret the behaviour of others as oppressive. If you’re of the pigeonholing kind, you’ll be more likely to classify people and perceive them to have the expected characteristics of the groups you’ve arbitrarily assigned them to.

  376. says

    If you feel oppressed, you’ll be more likely to interpret the behaviour of others as oppressive.

    Perhaps because the reason you FEEL oppressed is that the behavior of others often IS oppressive.

    Just throwing wild ideas out there!

    If you are an oppressor, how does that affect the likelihood that you will take seriously the complaints of those who feel oppressed?

  377. Anthony K says

    Not completely subjective, but very much determined by one’s values. You are responsible for your interpretations, and these interpretations will be coloured by your experiences, beliefs and convictions. If you feel oppressed, you’ll be more likely to interpret the behaviour of others as oppressive. If you’re of the pigeonholing kind, you’ll be more likely to classify people and perceive them to have the expected characteristics of the groups you’ve arbitrarily assigned them to.

    I’d like some evidence for these claims.

    As for perception of expected characteristics, there’s literature available on that: stereotype threat/enhancement.

  378. Anthony K says

    If you are an oppressor, how does that affect the likelihood that you will take seriously the complaints of those who feel oppressed?

    Is the oppressor an English pigeonholer, or an African one? Fully laden or not?

  379. myuido says

    @Nerd Of Redhead, Post 950

    You can OPINE and commit sophistry all you want to attempt to change your mind, but after 900 posts your OPINION is simply a repeat we have heard dozens of times already.

    If I wasn’t open to changing my mind i’d hardly be a very good skeptic. I’m sorry if this bores you, have you considered finding something else to do?

  380. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If I wasn’t open to changing my mind i’d hardly be a very good skeptic. I’m sorry if this bores you, have you considered finding something else to do?

    I’m not seeing your mind open. What bores me is that after 900+posts, you keep repeating old arguments like they are new and we haven’t heard them before. That is my point. And evidence would help, not just OPINION.

  381. myuido says

    @Anthony K, Post 952

    If he’d rather pull shit out of his ass then admit he doesn’t know and research is needed, then what use is he as a skeptic?

    How is claiming that his remark isn’t evidence of sexism but incompetence a defence?

    Don’t you think that’s a very severe judgement to make on the basis of very short youtube clip?

  382. Anthony K says

    Don’t you think that’s a very severe judgement to make on the basis of very short youtube clip?

    ‘Severe’ judgement? You’re the one who suggested he was as non-skeptical as a politician.

  383. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    I hope a monitor mentions to PZ about the rape fantasies expressed by made2heal @889. That’s disgusting.
    Jadehawk, you do not deserve to be talked to like that.

  384. consciousness razor says

    You’re the one who suggested he was as non-skeptical as a politician.

    That is pretty severe. Shame on you, myuido. Michael Shermer is smarter than that.

    And smarmier.

  385. Ichthyic says

    There might just be a possibility that he [shermer] doesn’t know.

    YA THINK?

    ya think maybe he just pulled his answer out of his ass, but presented it as authoritative, then tried to back it up post hoc much later?

    man, there might be hope for you yet.

  386. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Don’t you think that’s a very severe judgement to make on the basis of very short youtube clip?

    Your concern is noted. And rejected. Take it on the road.

  387. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Are you some kind of Turing Test?

    No, but I do see to the root of your problems. Like we don’t take your OPINION seriously, and that causes your fee to have a problem.

  388. maddog1129 says

    I certainly think that some work needs to be done to encourage women to get involved more.

    @ Noelplum/Jim in #555 (iirc)

    What do you have in mind?

  389. Tony ∞The Queer Shoop∞ says

    noelplum99:
    I liked your response @752. Do you feel Shermer’s statement is normative or descriptive?
    I also think it is out of line to tell someone to ‘fuck off and die’ (or variations thereof), so I don’t support the language used against you as quoted in @832.

  390. says

    As for perception of expected characteristics, there’s literature available on that: stereotype threat/enhancement.

    I was just reading about the study that came up with this today (studying for an exam), and there are a few flaws with the study mentioned (and it’s mentioned on the wiki article).
    First is that the effect was there without the women being told that females performed worse on the first part of the test (so explicit stereotype threat is there, but there is also an implicit stereotype threat that we can’t measure?), but more importantly, there was no control group. The original test was simply 2 groups of men and women undergrads (chosen because of their math ability) and given a test with mostly calculus and abstract algebra questions. Now, the women were told that females generally did worse on the first part, and better on the second. Because of this, the females did much worse than the men on this part of the test. The same group of men and women where given a different test, and they were not told anything about doing worse, and both groups did about just as well as each other.

    Obviously the problem with this study is that they should’ve used a between-subjects design, which would’ve ruled out any possible problems with re-using the same groups.

    Also they didn’t make sure that both parts of the test were equally difficult, which resulted in them having to discard a lot of data.

    I’m not saying their findings are wrong in any way, I just found it interesting because I was reading about it in my textbook. Have there been any more studies done on this effect recently? I wouldn’t mind reading about them if there are any.

  391. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Have there been any more studies done on this effect recently? I wouldn’t mind reading about them if there are any.

    Google Scholar. Have a go at finding out and telling us.

  392. says

    @ myuido 903 etc

    It seems to me that only a particularly mean-spirited person could take his words and assume they were really on the level as “women can’t do thinky”.

    Judas Priest! It is right there, quoted in the OP (let me highlight this for you):

    It’s who wants to stand up and talk about it, go on shows about it, go to conferences and speak about it, who’s intellectually active about it; you know, it’s more of a guy thing.

    One could argue that a problem with the aetheist movement is that it is, right now (and unfortunately), “a guy thing”. ie: Attracting men and repulsing women. This is a very failure of the aetheist movement we strive to ameliorate. Are you suggesting MS just stated this badly?

    @ Bill Openthalt 932

    [if oppressed] …you’ll be more likely to interpret the behaviour of others as oppressive

    By your same argument you could have said:

    If you are an oppressor you are more likely to play down and/or rationalise your behaviour.

    Why, though, do you choose to stick it to the oppressed rather than the oppressor? Are you denying said oppression exists?

  393. Anthony K says

    I also think it is out of line to tell someone to ‘fuck off and die’ (or variations thereof), so I don’t support the language used against you as quoted in @832.

    Tony (and others), that comment was made by me.

    Out of line, and I still apologise for making it.

  394. Gnumann+, nothing gnu under the sun (but the name sticks) says

    Tony, way upthread:

    Look, I’m going to need some links if I’m to believe you have faults. From what I’ve read of you, you are good people.

    Aw, chuck, thanks!
    Links I could manage, but one of my faults is that I’m lazy. And vain. So I won’t.
    Besides (and I very much suspect you’re aware of this: Recognizing ones faults, and working on them is what makes good people. Otherwise one ends up as certain specimens in this thread.

  395. says

    Tony @953

    I liked your response @752. Do you feel Shermer’s statement is normative or descriptive?

    Personally, when I read his blog (which i did prior to reading anything else on the matter) my initial reading didn’t even consider anything other than a descriptive reading.
    that isn’t to say that i am right on that. i have my biases here. My particular bias being my YT experience whereby (as I mentioned elsewhere via google analytics) i know that 90% of my viewers are male and from conversations I have had with my female colleagues i know this is generally true. So i suppose when I read Shermer say ‘it’s a guy thing’ my instinctive rationale goes along the lines of ‘male atheists seem to feel more of a need to go out there and discuss and proselytise their atheism and that statistical asymmetry is simply being reflected in conference attendance – given A you would expect B’.

    So that was my reading and i hope that gives you some idea of my perspective that *I think* probably underpinned it (but who can be sure, we can only psychoanalyse ourselves so far!).

    Jim.

  396. says

    @952 maddog

    @ Noelplum/Jim in #555 (iirc)

    What do you have in mind?

    When i first heard of talk of harassment policies, as I made clear on video at the time (and this was the first I had ever even heard of these conferences and conventions) I said that it seemed a reasonable idea to just shut up about them and implement the damned things. Whether they are really necessary or not, if they are percieved to be necessary and are not implemented then that itself becomes a problem and could dissuade people with a genuine interest to attend.
    I would also say that childcare being an issue more often for women than men is clearly something that can better enable those who would like to attend, but cannot for this reason, to attend. i have no doubt that would be an encouragement.
    Maybe also the balance of subjects is skewed in favour of mens-topics, if that even means anything. Tbh, if the balance of subjects considered needs altering then I think that is a valid thing to do as long as the topics are sensibly within the remit of the gathering and not a sop: i would have thought the vast majority of topics that could be discussed at an atheist gathering would be either gender neutral or of more interest to women anyway (since they are the ones who come under the hamme rof religious oppression most often) but maybe as sceptics gatherings things are different (scepticism means a more specific thing here in the UK and I have never really associated with scepticism as it is more specifically big foots, ufos and the paranormal etc)

    What i don’t like is artificial means, such as cajoling people who aren’t really that bothered to attend just to statistically balance the books. As long as people are equally enabled and comfy to attend (which, ironically is probably less likely now than ever – i know I would feel most unwelcome to consider attending) then I think from that point on the chips fall wherever they fall.
    Jim

  397. says

    As long as people are equally enabled and comfy to attend (which, ironically is probably less likely now than ever – i know I would feel most unwelcome to consider attending
    That would be no-one else’s fault but your own.

  398. John Morales says

    noelplum99:

    So i suppose when I read Shermer say ‘it’s a guy thing’ my instinctive rationale goes along the lines of ‘male atheists seem to feel more of a need to go out there and discuss and proselytise their atheism and that statistical asymmetry is simply being reflected in conference attendance – given A you would expect B’.

    In other words, a sexist rationale based on gender-essentialist motivated reasoning.

    So that was my reading and i hope that gives you some idea of my perspective that *I think* probably underpinned it (but who can be sure, we can only psychoanalyse ourselves so far!).

    Addressed @674 — yours was (and is) a stupid reading.

  399. Aase Lange says

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for consistently fighting the good fight; and for doing so in a rational (!) and respectful manner.

  400. Rey Fox says

    Don’t you think that’s a very severe judgement to make on the basis of very short youtube clip?

    IT’S NOT JUST THAT ONE FUCKING REMARK. I tried to explain this to you 800 comments ago. HE WROTE AN ENTIRE BLOG POST ABOUT IT. How “off the cuff” is that?

  401. Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle says

    It seems to me that only a particularly mean-spirited person could take his words and assume they were really on the level as “women can’t do thinky”. Surely he has every right to respond to that nonsense without being mindlessly accused of “doubling down”.

    Translation: Women who speak up about sexism are “particularly mean-spirited”, especially if the man they direct their criticism to is a coward who can’t admit a mistake.
    ++

    I’m also amazed that Benson’s mild criticism is being turned into “witch hunt!” and “very severe judgement” (because accusations sexism and misogyny always end a man’s career, right? *facepalm*)

    And, yet, it’s women who are supposedly over-emotional, irrational, too sensitive, etc. Shermer throws an epic temper tantrum at being mildly called out, his ridiculously hyperbolic fanbois turn him into the tragic martyr of imaginary misandry and it’s women who are unskeptical.

    And, I bet they’re STILL confused why there’s fewer female participants. Can’t see the forrest for the goddamn dipshittery.

  402. sezit says

    Here’s what I think is the main rub: Shermer doesn’t think that there is anything inherently sexist or racist in the movement because he is not seeing active sexism/racism. This is like the difference between “hard” and “soft” Atheism. Shermer is not a “hard” sexist or racist in that he doesn’t seem to want to take action against equal participation, but he doesn’t seem to want to acknowlege that there is a problem, or take a stance to improve the situation. That seems to me to be “soft” sexism/racism, and is a little bit like saying “the poor will always be with us, so why bother to try to improve their lot?” Unfortunately, this is the starting position for all of us. We all need to constantly sensitize and educate ourselves on the issues that do not directly impact us. Let’s hope that Shermer is undergoing that sensitization process now.

  403. Stacy says

    It is suggested that the general conclusion that women are more religious than men is culture-specific, and contingent on the measurement method used

    Interesting, John Morales.

    The thing about the clip I linked to is, it shows that 12 years ago Shermer was saying that women are more religious, they respond to religion because of its emotional comforts, and that’s just the way it is. There’s no question of socialization, just “Vive la difference.”

    Sure sounds close to “women don’t do thinky,” to me. Maher is even worse, of course; Shermer just grins at the things he says.